School news 13th December 2013

Big Questions Day – As part of our Religious and Moral Education programme we encourage to our pupils to consider and think about major issues and develop critical thinking skills understanding where their own beliefs come from.  This can be challenging for some but rewarding for those who take part.

On Thursday 28th November S5/6 pupils welcomed representatives from the local churches to spend a day with them thinking about ‘big’ moral questions.  The theme was: The value of a human being.  After an introductory session looking at the value of different occupations and then gauging opinions on a range of philosophical questions, the main focus of the day moved to the issue of voluntary euthanasia. The group worked in teams to identify the key arguments on both sides of the debate in preparation for what turned into a very lively discussion on whether or not assisted suicide should be legalised (as it is in several European countries).  Pupils also had a chance to explore the answers to some of their questions on a wide range of philosophical issues with the visitors before the end of the day.  This was a good opportunity for pupils to think through and to develop their own views and opinions, by talking about them and by listening to the views of their peers, and they participated with enthusiasm and maturity.  We are grateful to our guests who were able to discuss these issues without bias whilst making it clear that their opinions were based on their own beliefs.

Feedback from S5 and S6 pupils taking part was very positive and on that basis this was one of the most successful events that we have organised in school this session!  Thanks to Mrs MacRae for arranging this for a second year in succession.

Comenius Project 2013-2015 – The High School has, for the second time, been successful in applying for funding for a Comenius Project.  The Project title is “The Four Natural Elements and their impact on our lives”, and the countries involved are Latvia, Portugal, Poland, Greece, Turkey, Finland, Spain and Scotland.

As in the last project, pupils and staff from Gairloch High School will travel to each of these countries, making presentations on their research of the Project.  In addition, they will sample life in other European schools and communities, as well as experiencing the contrasting cultures; also on the agenda will be a great deal of “making friends” and “having fun”!

In November, Ms. Hunter and Ms. Dean accompanied pupils Becky Griggs and Innis Taylor to Latvia.  After a few days in the capital city, Riga, they went to the Comenius school of Preili, where they met their hosts for the week.  The trip was filled with many different experiences, including architecture, history, crafts, music and dance.  All had a wonderful week, and look forward to sharing photos and films with the school and the general public in the near future.

The next trip is in January, when pupils Sara Johnston, Eilidh Johnston and Caitlin Mitchell will travel to Oporto in Portugal.

Gairloch High School, Gaelic Resources and the John Muir Trust – S4 pupils were recently involved with the John Muir Trust – translating various items in to Gaelic. Pupils who took part in this project were Rowan Mackenzie, Callum Mackenzie, Alfie Gudgeon and Calum Nelson. The latest John Muir Award e-bulletin contained the following:

Gairloch High School and Gaelic Resource – Mòran taing (many thanks) to Gairloch High School students and their teacher who took up the challenge to translate the John Muir Award certificate cover letter into Gaelic. This accompanies the existing Record Books, and John Muir Discovery Award Certificates that are currently available as a Gaelic resource.

Seafood Cookery Course – The High School played host to the Seafood and Shellfish cookery course on Monday with local people and Professional Cookery seniors taking part in the two-hour event, led by Jess Dodds of Dry Island Shellfish.  The pupils and other participants had the chance to prepare a variety of seafood including crabs, squat lobsters mussels and made a delicious Thai Fish Curry.  The event was arranged by Susan MacLean of West Highland College and the school for the provided the use of the Home Economics room for the morning.

Seafood CookeryClick on the image above to see some more photos from the event

S5 Visit to Munro Slaughterhouse – On Thursday the 14th November our Rural Skills class (Neil, John, Jake and Ross) went to the abattoir in Dingwall to find out how the business works and to see where all our meat comes from. Here is their report:  When we arrived John Munro met us and he showed us round the premises. We looked at the penning area, slaughter room and freezers where meat is hung and ready for cutting or packing. We were shown animals being killed, butchered and packed ready for selling.  Each week 150 sheep, 100 cows and 50 pigs are slaughtered for market or for private use.

When Cattle get sent to the abattoir they come with a passport and that has their ear tag on it, farm number, gender and breed of cattle. They also have passports for things like disease control and so it maintains consumer confidence.  In this trade there is a four-year apprenticeship to become a slaughter man or a butcher.
Visit to Munro's Slaughterhouse, Dingwall

Important Dates – As we progress through December check the school website for important dates.  Study club has been running after school three days a week for three weeks.

Prelims for S4/5/6 pupils start on the 14th January!

The School Dance is on Friday 13th December.

School closes for Christmas Holidays on Friday 20th December at 1.30pm

Christmas Wishes – Everyone at the school wishes a happy and festive Christmas to everyone in the community with best wishes for the New Year.

Christmas Lunch 2013

Click on the images to see photos from our Christmas dress up (above) which raised over £70 for the Salvation Army and the Christmas Dance (below)

Christmas Dance 2013

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