Thursday, 18 November 2021

Senior Hockey Victory

The High School started out strongly with Ben Pasley acting as the glue in midfield linking with the wing backs Sam Walsh and Marcus Empey who found the forwards.  The game started well with an Eli Breen run through the middle defeating several players to create a dangerous circle penetration.  The deadlock was broken with a lovely Tom Whelan attack down the right and a forward shot to the keeper's right.  Ben continued with great pressure in midfield turning the ball over to score a solo goal on the run from his own half.  It was 2-0 at half time. 

The second half started well with HSD continuing to attack down the wings concluding with Sam Maxwell skillfully turning defenders inside out to find Alex Lynch free in the middle of the circle.  Alex dispatched the ball into the top corner.  A continuous dominance from centre backs Luke Fitzpatrick and Darragh Sullivan saw them pick out the dynamic forward line of Oscar Loftus, Oscar Maguire, Tom Whelan, Ryan Wynne, Chris de Lacy and Alex Lynch.  The attacking continued through the midfield to find Ryan Wynne at the top of the circle. He had an amazing strike that fell to Eli who scored a wonder strike from 1 yard.  Another good lead from Charlie Beatty saw a shot saved; Eli picked it up but the tap was saved and a well-taken rebound secured the goal for Sam Maxwell.  The Most Valuable Player was awarded to Sam Maxwell for his consistent attacks down the right hand side.  A clean sheet for Luke Stevens with the help of the midfield generals Charlie Beatty and Sean O’Brien contributed to a 5-0 victory and a great start to the All Ireland campaign for The High School.  We would like to thank all supporters and staff for their continuous encouragement.  

The All Ireland competition is in a new league format this year due to Covid-19 restrictions.  Each group contains 4 teams and plays against each team. The team with the highest points in each group progresses to the semi final. The High School were drawn against Methodist College at home, Midleton College away (8 December) and Wallace High School away (January).  The High School will host Midleton College who play Wallace High School (December 13) and Methodist College (January).
Ms Gray

Thursday, 4 November 2021

Irish Times Letter Writing Competition Winner

 "Dear World,

What can I say?  Our home is on fire.  We are facing mass extinction and an environmental disaster.  Climate change is real, and it is happening now.  It is popular to say that climate action is about the little things everyone can do in their lives.  And while I agree to a point, this threat is bigger than any of us individually.
We need a global response, with our world leaders taking responsibility.  From my perspective, it feels like you have a habit of pushing this problem on to us young people.  I am hurt by this.  But if we are to be successful in this, we cannot be pitted against each other.
So, I would like to take this opportunity to extend an invitation to all of you to join the fight against climate change.  The fight of a lifetime.  Welcome.  I will have to live with consequences of how you choose to act for my whole life.  Our lives are in your hands.  However, climate change will not just affect young people and future generations, it is affecting every person who is alive right now.  The countries that contribute the least to global warming are affected the most by it, but even in wealthier countries we are feeling the effects of devastating heatwaves, fires, floods and harsher winters.  No one is immune from the effects of climate change. 
If, at the moment, you don’t consider environmental action to be the biggest priority, I beg you to rethink your values.  Economic growth will mean nothing if we are suffering and dying due to extreme weather.  You need to stop burning fossil fuels.  We need to make a complete and just transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy.  Because if we don’t, we will have failed.  The clock is ticking."
Tirzah Hutchinson Edgar

This letter was first published in The Irish Times on Oct 23, 2021. You can see the original article here

This letter was one of the winning entrants in the Dear World Letter Writing competition in The Irish Times. As more than 190 world leaders prepared to meet in Glasgow in October for the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26), The Irish Times wanted the children of Ireland to write to them, outlining their hopes, fears and solutions to the climate crisis and the action they want to see our leaders take. High School pupil Tirzah Hutchinson Edgar was one of the winning authors.

Thursday, 14 October 2021

Black History Month at The High School

Hairstyling in Africa has been important for men and women for centuries  because it distinguishes one culture from another.  Hairstyles were used to indicate a person’s marital status, age, religion, ethnic identity, wealth, and rank in the community.  There are various styles from all over Africa and some have even crossed outside Africa to the western world and North America.  Unfortunately,  some may be almost extinct and can only be found deep in rural areas of Africa because of modernisation.   Cornrows became popular in the 1960s and 1970s because of the interest in embracing Black pride and natural hairstyles.  The name ‘cornrows’ came from how the braids were neatly lined up like the rows of crops in the fields.  In the Caribbean this style was sometimes called cane rows.  The enslaved wore cornrows as an effortless way to wear their hair during the week.  It was often styled on Sunday which was the only day off they had.  Enslaved Africans would also use cornrows as a communication code when they wanted to escape.  The number of cornrows on a person's head would let someone know certain meeting times or escape routes.  Obviously, there are many versions of cornrows in different parts of Africa and all over the world.  Cornrows date back to 3000 BC for women and the 19th Century for men.  Box braids also acted as a form of communication during the time of slavery.  It was a way for slaves to relay to one

another certain paths that could be taken to escape to freedom just like cornrows.  Braids have always been an intricate and expansive style.  They were also quite expensive when it came to time and materials.  They date back to about 3500 BC.  Janet Jackson made it very popular with her debut film ‘Poetic Justice.’  Many women were inspired by how effortlessly cool her braids and simple black cap were.  Ngala is a traditional hairstyle of the Igbo people of Nigeria.  Hair extensions  can be used and adornment of Igbo beads is added for elegance.  They are used for traditional weddings, coronations and festivals.  The style sybolises pride and elegance for women.  I usually see these in Nollywood movies on the wive(s) of the Igwe (king).  Ngala actually means to do ‘guy’ (to show off) in Igbo. Amasunzu originated in the Tusi and Hutu people of Rwanda.  It is dated around 500 years ago.  This style is used to signify social and marital status.  It symbolises strength and bravery for warriors.  It is a symbol of virginity for young girls.  It is a hairstyle of class and only the traditional elite wore it. 

Bantu Knots originated in the Zulu people of Southern Africa.  Worn by women, they symbolise femininty and status.  Bantu means ‘people’  in over 300  languages, and it has become popular to Africans and African Americans.  The hair is parted into sections and twisted then rapped in ‘spiral’ knots.  Fulani Braids originated thousands of years ago and is known to the Fulani  people of West Africa.  They symbolise identity in Fulani Women.  It’s becoming a very popular style around the world.  Hair is parted in the middle and the side and then braided.  Accessories can also be added African Threads is a traditional African hairstyle found all over Africa.  they are native to the Yoruba people of South-west Nigeria.  Used as a protective style to straighten the hair.  Hair is sectioned and then wrapped in threads. Zulu Topknots are found in the Zulu people of Southern Africa just like the name says. They symbolise status and only worn by members of the ruling class.  Hair is gathered into knots and stretched into sections with a tie - jewellery can be worn with this.  Ochre Dreadlocks are worn by the Hamar tribe of Ethiopia and symbolise the people of the Hamar tribe.  After

binding resin with water, they use the mixture on the sectioned hair to style it into locks.  Himba Dreadlocks are worn by the Himba Tribe of Northwest Nambia and symbolise age and life.  When a teenager enters puberty, they let the dreadlocks hang over their faces but when they are ready to get married, they reveal  their faces, just like a veil.  These locks are created by a mixture of butter, ochre and goat hair; extensions and accessories can be used.  Edamburu are worn by the Mangbetu People of Congo.  This style is used for skull elongation.  Thin braids are woven into a crown very carefully. Sahrawi Cornrows are worn by the people of Northern Africa.  One of their very few hair styles in Northern Africa because of their hair texture.  Hair is split into two sections and hair extensions are used to make the hair go down to the elbows.  Natural African Hair Types consist of 3a-4c depending on the skin tone or where you come from.  
By Divine Nwamara

Wednesday, 12 May 2021

Thursday, 11 February 2021

Exploring Chinese Culture

Painting by Annie Sun Form 6
Stemming from one of the world's oldest cultures, with thousands of years of history, contemporary Chinese media is both rich and varied, with a plethora of TV shows, movies, books and music to choose from, so you can be sure to find something suiting your tastes. So, what better way to celebrate Lunar New Year than to immerse yourself into Chinese literature, programmes and films? Below, I’ve compiled a by no means exhaustive list, but a good starting point to introduce you and help you navigate Chinese media. I hope you enjoy! (Note: Most of the TV shows and movies can be found on some form of online streaming service, such as Netflix or even Youtube and of course, Amazon is a gold mine when it comes to books)

Movies 1. Lost on Journey /人在囧途  (Rated PG)

A 2010 comedy film starring Wang Baoqiang (one of China’s most influential comedy stars), this movie tells the story of two unlikely companions, businessman Li Chengong and migrant worker Niu Geng, and their amusing attempts to navigate the “Chun Yun” - a period of travel with extremely high traffic loads as everyone tries to rush home for the Spring Festival – perfect for Chinese New Year!

2. Dying to Survive / 我不是药神  (Rated 12)

A heart-wrenching and powerful movie (and based on a true story), a pharmacist sells cheap Indian “dupe” medication to leukemia patients who cannot afford to buy the expensive German drugs - touching on important societal issues that’ll really make you think.

3. Shaolin Soccer / 少林足球  (Rated PG)

Directed by famed Hong Kong filmmaker Stephen Chow, this movie is a sports comedy about a Shaolin monk who reunites his 5 brothers to apply their spectacular martial art skills to play football and expose the public to Shaolin kung fu.

4. Eat Drink Man Woman / 饮食男女  (Rated PG)

A comedy drama directed by Ang Lee (also director of Life of Pi and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon), this movie received an Oscar nomination for Best Foreign Film in 1995, and for good reason. Set in Taiwan, this film tells the story of master chef Mr. Chu, and his three unmarried daughters, as their family life revolves around an evening banquet prepared by Chu every Sunday.

5. The Final Master / 师父  (Rated 15)

A 2015 martial arts film, this one is different from the Hollywood blockbuster kung fu that you’re used to. Kung fu grandmaster Chen arrives in Tianjin in the hopes of opening a martial arts school but must overcome 8 others first. A riveting plot is accentuated by the realistic portrayal of martial arts fighting – a must watch if you’re interested in kung fu.


1. The Three Body Problem / 三体 by Liu Cixin

Written by novelist Liu Cixin, and translated by Ken Liu, this is book is a must read for any sci-fi fans out there. Dealing with the three-body problem in orbital mechanics, Liu weaves an imaginative, yet realistic story about extraterrestrial life and human beings. A brilliant piece of Chinese literature – take it from Obama, who said the book was “wildly imaginative, really interesting”.

2. Love in a Fallen City / 倾城之恋 by Eileen Chang

As the title suggests, this novella tells of a love story during wartime Hong Kong and Shanghai. Written by Eileen Chang (whom director Ang Lee has described as the “fallen angel of Chinese literature”, any romance novel fan would find this a thrill to read.

3. A Madman’s Diary / 狂人日記 by Lu Xun

A short story by one of modern China’s most influential and greatest writers and inspired by Nikolai Gogal’s “Diary of a Madman”, Lu Xun pens the story of a “madman”, who is convinced that the people around him are potential man-eaters. An allegorical piece of work, this novel is considered to be China’s first modern short story - truly a cornerstone of Chinese literature.

4. Red Sorghum / 红高粱 by Mo Yan

Red Sorghum's plot revolves around three generations of a family between 1923 and 1976. The narrator tells the story of his family's struggles, first as distillery owners making sorghum wine and then as resistance fighters during the Second Sino-Japanese War. The novel also details civil disputes between warring Chinese groups, including rival gangs and political powers, and tells of Sino-Japanese relationships during this time. Authored by Mo Yan, who received a Nobel Prize in Literature for his works.

5. Romance of the Three Kingdoms / 三国演义 by Luo Guanzhong

Known as one of one of the Four Great Classical Novels in Chinese literature, and whose influence in East Asia is comparable to that of Shakespeare’s on English literature, the Romance of the Three Kingdoms is a 14th century historical novel, set towards the end of the Han dynasty and the Three Kingdoms period in Chinese history and deals with military battles, intrigues, and struggles of three states to achieve dominance for almost 100 years.

TV shows

1. Meteor Garden / 流星花园  (Rated 15)

2. A Love so Beautiful / 致我们单纯的小美好  (Rated 15)

3. Love 020 / 微微一笑很倾城  (Rated 15)

4. Put your Head on my Shoulder / 致我们暖暖的小时光  (Rated 15)

5. City Still Believes in Love / 北上广依然相信爱情  (Rated 15)

Wednesday, 10 February 2021

Heart of Hong Kong

Someone once told me a city is most beautiful in the morning. Today I view that as nothing but the truth. Imagine. 
5am. Middle of the Summer. Heart of Hong Kong. It’s the time of the day when most of the city still lies in slumber. If you step outside, past the threshold of your door, into the empty streets, the first thing you notice is the air. It isn’t fresh, open and dewy like you might be used to. No, Hong Kong air is smothering. It’s thick with pollution and heavy, almost suffocating. You feel it, you smell it, and if you squint, maybe you can even see it. It envelopes you in a bouldering cloud of heat that will take getting used to. Later in the day, that heat will become borderline painful, but the sun has not yet climbed above the mountains, and after a few days, you will come to view the morning air as a comforting hug.The stillness of the morning allows you to admire the city in peace. Imagine blocks and blocks of apartments, shooting high up to meet the sky. Hong Kong is a city that is built upwards, buildings clustered next to each other, streaking up and up and up. When you look over and up at them, it’s wonderful and freeing, grand and protective. In the quiet, it’s like the whole city is looking over you.

But you are not the only one awake and outside at this hour. Perhaps, to your right, there is a grand, public park. And in this park, every morning, early as it is, the elderly are practicing the subtle art of tai chi. At this time of the day, tai chi is calming and focused, preparing for a busy day ahead. The quiet is grounding. The glows of 7-11 and Circle-K, Hong Kong’s 24-hour convenience stores, greet you with their gentle presence. Coming from your left then, you can hear the rumbling rattle of rails, the tell-tale signs of Hong Kong’s trains, and perhaps you can hear the sporadic sound of the buses too, already in motion. Hong Kong’s transport system is well-worked into the city, and the trembling of the trains barely ever stop.

In less than an hour, children will be getting up to go to morning school. Citizens will be rushing to catch their trains, or to set up their morning wet markets. In under an hour, the city will be bustling and full, a cacophony of flurried activity. In a city as illustrious as Hong Kong, it’s easy to forget the calming stillness of the morning.

So, imagine a while longer. Remember the details. If you’re ever lucky enough to travel there, take it all in.

I promise you.

You will feel alive.

By Daimee Ng