Transition year is  an opportunity for all students to try out new projects and ideas. Over the years our TYs have taken on many new challenges and projects. Here are a few recent ones.

Sustainable Living

This Autumn the Sus Living class have three projects to keep them busy. Right now they are busy preparing colourful planters to be placed at the front entrance to the school. Others are getting stuck into digging out the soil in the raised beds of the school community garden to plant food crops for next year. Finally the school is delighted to get involved with the Gaisce Award #BulbsForBeeschallenge. This project is an all-Ireland challenge to plant pollinator-friendly bulbs. Early spring is the time that many pollinators emerge from hibernation and need to find food, and species like Grape Hyacinth and Crocus are rich sources of nectar. Later species like Allium provide nectar in the summer. The TY students planted 50 Grape Hyacinth (Muscari Armeniacum) bulbs in the flower bed at the front gate. Hopefully the school grounds will be brimming with flowers – and bees – in the spring.
For more information on this project – and to get involved yourself – go to and follow the project on Twitter @GaisceAward #BulbsForBees



Last year, TY students used recycled materials to make furniture and other projects. One of their past projects was to make an “Insect Hotel out of discarded pipes and other rubbish. Ms McIntyre lead the Sustainable Living module in 2020 – 2021.  The  Sustainable Living group volunteered every Thursday morning to pick litter from the grounds of Sligo University Hospital. The TYs, under the guidance of Ms McIntyre, took on the task of keeping the front and rear of the hospital litter-free. This project was organised in conjunction with Sligo County Council and Sligo Tidy Towns. Ms McIntyre felt that community involvement was very important for students in order to foster a sense of collective responsibility with regard to improving our local environment.

Last year the TYs got the chance to contribute to the development of the old walled garden at the Hermitage, the girls boarding house. The aim was to develop the garden as a centre of organic and sustainable gardening practices and of biodiversity. The students installed raised beds in the Herm Garden.  Ms Tiernan of our Science Dept. also worked with the Sustainable Living students to increase biodiversity in the garden by planting bee and bird loving plants.  TYs  followed the National Pollinator Plan as part of their Science and Sustainable Living studies. The front lawn was let grow wild as part of the National Pollinator Plan and the bees have loved it! Science teacher, Sandra Tiernan has put together a video tour of her own bee-and-bird friendly garden for her students and colleagues to see how the National Pollinator Plan works in domestic gardens.  See it on our Science page. 

Green Schools

Sligo Grammar School runs a “Green Schools” class in Transition Year under the guidance of Ms Caldwell. This is a national initiative which encourages schools to promote environmental awareness among students as well as setting goals for the school in terms of its own environmental footprint. This year’s TY Green Schools group are continuing to raise awareness about litter and waste. They have linked up with the Neat Streets Organisation and recently had a virtual meeting with them. From this meeting the SGS team learned good ways to reduce waste in the community. They also set up an Instagram account (@sgsgreenschools) to help promote the “green” message within our school environment. Through Neat Streets, the SGS Green Schools project recently received a small grant of €200 which they hope to use to help reduce litter and waste in our school.

Irish Angus Competition


The school has been very successful in this project in recent years. TY students from 2018 – 2019 are National finalists in the competition and this year TY students also entered. After weeks of hard work and preparation, two groups of TY students entering the Irish Angus beef schools competition 2020 travelled to Mullingar to compete in the second stage of the competition. Each group was interviewed by a panel of 5, including members from Irish Angus producers group, ABP, Kepak and an agricultural science teacher. Well done all! 

Young Social Innovators

A group of TY students are involved in the Young Social Innovators project which en- courages young people to take an interest
in social issues of all kinds.

In 2020 – 2021 the YSI students are considering issues surrounding Mental Health. On Thursday 22nd October the Transition Year YSI group held a feel-good Fancy Dress Day in aid of Pieta House. Students and teachers all took the idea to heart and wore their best Hallowe’en costumes to school. Everyone donated €3 to Pieta House, who do such great work in mental health, and certainly the occasion gave everybody a boost, much needed after what was at times quite an anxious term in school. The YSI steam raised over €1,000 for the charity and gave us all a fun-filled day at school! Well done to all the YSI students and to Ms Stinson, their teacher.

On December 7th  YSI organised and ran a “Christmas Orienteering Fun Day” for the first year students. They aimed to spread some Christmassy positivity while also encouraging socially distanced teamwork, enjoyment of the outdoors and some physical activity. Under a blanket of thick fog the First years, in teams of 4,  explored the school grounds to find clues and reach goals. The fog gave the whole experience a mysterious air and was greatly enjoyed by all, first years and TYs. Prizes of chocolate santas were awarded to the winning team in each class. This YSI project follows the hugely successful whole-school Fancy Dress Day in October where they collected over €1,000 for Pieta House. Well done to the YSI students and their teacher Ms Stinson.

Last year 
the topic the TYs decided to tackle was water safety. On the 24th of March the students took part in a “speak out” competition at the Clayton hotel. The students performed fantastically and their props were amazing!! Thank you to Mr.Henry for being the best!

In 2017/2018 The TY students researched the issues surrounding obesity and diet in young Irish people.

In 2016/2017 our students are researching the issue of micro-beads in skin- care products. The YSI  group were awarded a Highly Commended Award in the National Final of the competition. 


For the past two years TY students have run a school bank in conjunction with the AIB “Build a Bank” project. The Bank is a great way for students to learn about running a business as well as get an insight into the financial world.


On the 26th of 
February a group
 of Transition Year
students began
working on their
 Cansat project.
Cansat encourages 
students to make a 
miniature satellite
that can measure
 pressure and temperature and from 
the information collected create a formula to measure altitude. Everyone in the group has a great interest in physics or programming.  Well done to everyone.


Junk Kouture

Junk Kouture is a national competition to encourage recycling. SGS has entered for the last number of years, getting through to the Regional finals most years and getting through to the National Finals in 2015/16.  Students work in teams of up to three to design, make and model the outfit. After the competition is over the students take the opportunity to learn how to cut and make their own clothing from scratch. They are taken on a field trip to a local fabric shop and choose patterns and fabric and make their own outfits. They find this experience very rewarding and they are amazed by the new skills they learn. 

Young Enterprise Mini-Company

Mini-Companies have been an integral part of TY Business Studies over the years. This year the TY group setup a a company making and marketing chopping boards.

Sky sports “Living for Sport” 

TY students get a chance to take part in the Sky Sports “Living for Sport” programme, which is a sports day to teach students life lessons for success in sport. 



This year TY science enthusiasts once again got involved in the SciFest programme. The programme aims to encourage a love of science and technology. Students are asked to present and display their scientific investigations, which cover a huge range of areas of interest. Both students and teachers found the experience very rewarding.

In 2016/2017 they presented projects as diverse as “Water Bottle Rockets” and an investigation entitled “Do Preferences Bias our Choices?” 

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