Our school opened in September 2003 after the successful amalgamation of St Mochua’s PS Derrynoose and Our Lady’s PS Carrickaduff and is situated along the Armagh/Monaghan border, some three miles from the nearest town.
Our school vision, ‘Reaching for the future… A voice today…’ was the catalyst that launched our desire to ensure the children in our care were subjected to a broad balanced curriculum so that they could develop skills of leadership, creativity and teamwork, that would allow them to become contributors to the society in which they belonged.
To this end we sought opportunities that would ensure our children grew into confident individuals, while at the same time focusing and learning the art of leadership, creativity and skills of teamwork.
Science at Queens University Belfast
One of our first projects was a ‘Sounds Like Science’ project at QUB. This involved the children presenting a project at the University. They had to work as a team and come up with creative ideas as to how sound plays an important role in science. They had to take on different leadership roles to put their presentations together. This was the beginning of a journey, that set us on a pathway that would lead to a strong ethos of enterprise and entrepreneurship.
Engineering @ University of Ulster Jordnastown
Our successful partnership with QUB resulted in a prestigious invite to become involved in a three year STEM Engineering Project at the University of Ulster Jordanstown. This involved working with Engineers from different companies and designing and modelling to solve a given problem. Our work involved making bridges, wind turbines and mushroom farms using an array of materials including cement mixers!!
Young Enterprise Northern Ireland ‘recognises that the world in which our young people will live and work is ever-changing, and continually develop our programme offering to ensure that they acquire the skills they will need to become enterprising, creative and commercially aware.’
These skills are the very foundations of our future economy, and the Northern Ireland Executive has acknowledged the value of enterprise education as part of its economic strategy through the implementation of the revised curriculum.
The Young Enterprise Primary Programmes introduce young people to business concepts at stages 1-2 of our Learner Development Journey. Each programme is tailored to its specific age group raising awareness, building understanding, giving students the chance to apply their skills and finally to model their competencies through starting their own business. Topics include Our World, Ourselves, Our City and Our Community.
This programme has been delivered in our school by our highly experienced Classroom Assistants and in recognition of their excellence we were awarded with an Excellence Award in 2012.
The Infamous Swop Shop Day
A key feature of our ‘developing entrepreneurship ethos’ is our yearly Swop Shop Day. This is organised by our Pupil Leadership Team and runs along side our Young Enterprise Programmes.
The children are allowed to bring in items from home that they can either sell or swop. In addition they can bring in a small sum of money that they can use to purchase items. Each child gets a stall to lay out their items. Once this is completed the trading bell will ring for the first time. This allows the children time to go round and view other items but no bartering, negotiating or deal making is allowed during this period. This session allows the children time to think about things they might like and ensures that they don’t make decisions that they might later regret. When the second bell rings this signals the start of the trading session. See below;
You will see that this event allows for the development of leadership, creativity and teamwork;
- Responsible for own decision making – what to swop, sell and buy
- Understand some decisions are irreversible
- Be happy with decisions made
- Applaud others in their decisions
- Assist and help others
- Discussion, thought and consequences
- How to present items for sale
- Figure out costings and saleable value
- Skill of bartering – ability to be flexible
- Baking or making – Have I a skill that I can market
- Identify skills of friends or class mates
- Identify ways of making a profit
- Work with others – agree product swop or price to buy
- Sell items and then club together with a friend to purchase an item
- Baking or Making in preparation for Swop Shop Day
- Pupil Leadership Team members must decide on nominated Charity – reasoning, benefiting etc.
- The skills of Leadership, Creativity and Teamwork all require…
School Company Launched – Oakers’ Enterprise
In January 2017 our Primary Seven Class launched a new company called Oakers’ Enterprise. The name was chosen, as Derrynoose is known as the place of the oak. Our Primary 7s created an Easter Product called Scrumptious Sweetie Jar. It had a cream-egg in the middle and lots of sweets surrounding the cream-egg. The jar had a little rabbits face on one side and on the other side of the jar there was our Oakers’ Enterprise Logo. The Jars cost £3.00. Any Profits made will go towards Charity with some being kept in the Company Account for future projects.
Dragon’s Den 2018
As part of our Shared Education Programme the children in P6/7 have been working with the pupils from Clontibret NS in a Young Enterprise programme called Business Beginnings which involves the design, marketing, production and sale of a product. The task this year was for each group to come up with an Easter Product – each group then had to pitch their ideas to three dragons with the winning group’s product becoming the product that will be mass produced and sold by our school company Oakers’ Enterprise.
The winning product selected was Sweet Pots as below. Thanks to our dragons Mrs Wendy McChesney from McChesney Motors Clontibret, Mrs Helen Fitzpatrick from Young Enterprise NI and Mr Farrell.
Production Line with our Shared Ed Neighbours
As part of our Shared Education Programme with Clontibret National School our school company ‘Oakers’ Enterprise’ have produced an Easter Product called Sweet Pots. The children had to design their product, completing market research and working as a team to agree ideas. This lead to the children producing a power point presentation which they presented to our three dragons in a Dragons Den Play Off. The winning product was then mass produced by the children as below with all proceeds going to charity!! Great work by all.
Our Shared Education Partnership has meant we have had to reflect how we can empower others to be
Can you help us in our thought process of how we are developing our Leadership, Creativity, Teamwork and Empathy Skills while building on our current practice.
Another Award 2019
Congratulations to our P7 Girls who put together our project that was entered into the Young Enterprise Business Beginnings Competition – The submission told the story of our Shared Education Project with Clontibret NS – We were delighted to be announced Southern Area Winners – an excellent achievement that reflects our ongoing work with Young Enterprise on a yearly basis. Super achievement.