The value of post its for evaluation!

post its

This post is credited to my lecturer Elaine McDonald who taught my year about the value of using post its in our teaching!


I have been using post its since my first teaching practice and they work! You can use post its in many ways. It is a really easy and simple but yet effective teaching tip! You can see immediately if there are any gaps in your students understanding of a certain topic. You read the students questions about a certain topic. Also you can see the best ways that your students learn. I really love it.. I have been using this top for 4 years and I plan on using it throughout my teaching career!

At the start of the year, I will write on the whiteboard, ‘What can Ms O Reilly do this year to help you learn this year?’. I will give each student a a post it and I will ask the students to write their answer on their post it and stick it on the whiteboard. Th allows you to see at the start of the year what the students expect/need from you.

On example is when I am nearing the end of the lesson so  I give every student a post it. I ask them to write down on the post it one question they have about today’s topic.

Or else I write 3 questions on the whiteboard and I ask the students to respond to each question on their post it.

Some examples of questions are:

  1. What did you like about today’s lesson.
  2. Write down one thing that you learnt in today’s lesson.
  3. What did you not like about today’s lesson.
  4. What did you find hard to understand about today’s lesson.
  5. What did we do in today’s lesson that you helped you to understand the topic?

It is best to tell the students not to write their names down on their post it as you will get the best answers if it is anonymous. Students love not writing their name down as they do not have to feel anxious about asking a ‘stupid question’ and it gives them more confidence to be brutally honest!



You can get the students to fold over the post it so it is sealed. You can take the posts its up and address the questions before the lesson ends or else you can collect the  post its at the very end of the lesson.


You can use this tip in ANY subject! I hope you find this tip helpful!




Some SPHE resources

Here are some websites and resources that I have found really good for teaching SPHE. Hopefully they will be of some help to you too! You can also use the handout I made about common teenage health concerns.
 This is ‘Lil Lets’ English Youtube channel. It has a lot of video clips and there is a really good variety! For example ‘How the Monthly Cycle works, Talking Periods, Going Through Puberty Changes). It features video clips from English celebrities such as Nicola Roberts (Girls Aloud) and Vanessa White (The Saturdays), English sports stars and English bloggers.
This is ‘Lil Lets’ Irish Youtube site. It has only recently been set up. It features video clips from Stephanie Roche who plays for Ireland and So Sue Me and Melanie Murphy who are two very famous Irish bloggers. As it is a new site, they will be adding a lot of new content over the next few months!
This is ‘Lil Lets’ English website. You can download a booklet about ‘Becoming a Teen’. The advice column has some good tips. For example having your first crush and your first kiss.
This is ‘Lil Lets’ Irish website. Like the Irish Youtube site, it is new and it will be updated over the next few months.
All images used are from Google images.

Modern day Shakespeare 

shakespeare picture

William Shakespeare still today has a significance in our lives. We say things and we do not know that some of sentences originated from Shakespeare. Shakespeare wrote 1/10 of the most quoted lines ever written or spoken in English!

The idea of tackling Shakespeare in school has sometimes sent chills down both students’ and teachers’ spines, but the truth is that studying Shakespeare does not have to be so scary/daunting. His plays and sonnets are filled with themes that are relevant still to this day. Most importantly, Shakespeare knew how to tell a good story.

shakespeare statistics

Shakespeare invented many words! 3,000 in fact!

willliam s

Even words that our students think were only invented lately like ‘twerk’ and ‘swagger’.



Young people today love using quotes to describe their daily lives! Many of them do not realise that the quotes they are using are by Shakespeare.

a fool



go slowly

love me


It is important to show the students this so they can relate to Shakespeare!


Tasks to use in the classroom

Here is a Shakespeare’s original version and a modern version from the play ‘Romeo and Juliet’.

Original- Juliet: Thou know’st the mask of night is on my face, Else would a maiden blush bepaint my cheek For that which thou hast heard me speak to-night Fain would I dwell on form, fain, fain deny What I have spoke: but farewell compliment! Dost thou love me? I know thou wilt say ‘Ay,’ And I will take thy word: yet if thou swear’st, Thou mayst prove false; at lovers’ perjuries Then say, Jove* laughs. O gentle Romeo, If thou dost love, pronounce it faithfully: Or if thou think’st I am too quickly won, I’ll frown and be perverse an say thee nay, So thou wilt woo; but else, not for the world. In truth, fair Montague, I am too fond.
A modern equivalent Juliet: Because it’s dark, you can’t see my face. Otherwise you’d see me blushing About what you’ve heard me say tonight. I would willingly stay polite and deny  What I have said. But forget about being polite, Do you love me? I know you will say yes.
And I will believe you. But if you promise you love me, You might actually be lying. They say God laughs  When lovers lie to each other. Oh gentle Romeo, If you do love me, say it truly. Or if you think it’s too quick and easy to get me to love you, I’ll frown and play hard to get and say no to you So you’ll try harder to win me. But otherwise, I wouldn’t act that way for anything. To tell you the truth, handsome Montague, I’m too keen on you.

As a task, you could put the students in to groups and get each group to rewrite in modern language certain parts of the play.

Another task- Shakespearean vocabulary 

Work in pairs to match the Shakespearean vocabulary (1-15) with the modern day equivalents (a-o).
Shakespearean Modern day
1. Fain
2. Farewell
3. Nay
4. Oft
5. Woo
6. Lest
7. Wherefore
8. Methinks
9. Pronounce
10. Ay
11. Swear
12. Twas
13. Perjury
14. Else
15. Prithee
a. Say
b. Yes
c. Otherwise
d. Promise
e. Telling a lie
f. For fear that, in case
g. Flirt or romance
h. Why
i. Goodbye
j. Often
k. I think
l. Willingly
m. No
n. Please
o. It was

Another task could be:

Look at these famous quotes from Shakespeare.

What are the modern-day equivalents of the underlined words?

1. ‘The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool.’  As You Like It
2. ‘This above all: to thine own self be true,  And it must follow, as the night the day,  Thou canst not then be false to any man.’ Hamlet
3. ‘Give every man thy ear, but few thy voice.’ Hamlet
4. ‘Many a true word hath been spoken in jest*.’ King Lear

Once the task is complete, start a discussion with the students about the quotes!

Talking like Shakespeare task.
With a partner, write a short dialogue using as many of the Shakespearean words in as you can, and Shakespearean grammar. Then read your dialogue aloud to the class.


Shakespeare Resources

Shakespeare Online
A wide range of information about Shakespeare and his works.

Images of Shakespeare’s life.

These black and white images show the house where Shakespeare was born, the writing on his tombstone, and more.

Absolute Shakespeare
An essential resource for William Shakespeare’s plays, sonnets, poems, quotes, biography and the legendary Globe Theatre .

Elizabethan dress

Learn about Elizabethan dress on this website that even includes some patterns to make your own!!

Poetry magnetic tiles

This is a really cool tool works like magnetic poetry tiles. Select how many Shakespearean words you want, then receive that many random tiles that you can arrange however you like to create your own Shakespearean poetry.

Folger Shakespeare Library Online Resources for Teachers
This site has lesson plans and resources for teaching Shakespeare. You can sign up for a newsletter, find links to videos, and much more from this site that makes teaching Shakespeare easier!

Shakespeare dictionary

This is a brilliant dictionary that provides definitions for words that are no longer used or have changed in meaning  for example ‘power’ and it also offers insight into the symbolism of words that modern readers might not recognize.

Shake Speare 

This guide offers a lot! It has personal information about Shakespeare to plots of all his plays to a handy list of glossaries.

No Fear Shakespeare

This resource is from Spark Notes. It puts two pages side by side: one with Shakespeare’s language and one with modern language.

Open Source Shakespeare

You read Shakespeare’s works here, or you can use the concordance to learn about specific words and get statistics.

Understanding Shakespeare

This site offers translations of some of the most common Shakespearean words.

Phrase used by Shakespeare

This site allows us to find out what common phrases were probably first used by Shakespeare.

Teachers guide to Shakespeare

This guide tips and advice for teaching any Shakespeare drama.


You can listen to 8 of Shakespeare plays and 4 sonnets here.

Video clips

This site contains a variety of  videos clips .


How well do you know Shakespeare quizzes?

Shakespeare quotations quiz

Shakespeare general quiz












Always look around you..



We live in  a world where we are so consumed with technology. When I was a child, I played outside and made the best memories. Many children today do not enjoy playing unless it is on an ipad.

However, it is not just children who are guilty! We constantly check Snapchat and Instagram and Facebook. We obsess about others peoples lives and we constantly COMPARE ourselves to others.  We do not fully appreciate our own lives.

We have become robots!

You cannot truly bond with someone when you are glued to your phone/ipad/laptop. When something happens, we take our phones to record it. How can we fully be present in the moment if we are on our phones? Always look around you. Be mindful. Fully absorb everything around you. Make memories! The best experiences are the experiences you could not take a picture because you were enjoying life too much.

When you are your deathbed, you will not be thinking about technology but rather your favourite memories!

You can use this content in SPHE or non exam LC religion or in Section D in Junior Certificate Religion!

What is the meaning of life? Is it to be consumed by technology?


Am I addicted to my phone? Here are some signs to look out for: 

  1. You check it when you wake up in the morning and before you go to bed.
  2. If it is not in your hand, you get anxious.
  3. Hours pass while you are on your phone.
  4. If your battery goes below 30 per cent, you panic!
  5. You use your phone on the toilet!
  6. You use your phone while talking to someone.
  7. You sleep with your phone on your nightstand or beside you in bed.
  8. You have a lot of apps!
  9. Turning your phone off on a flight gives you serious FOMO. (Fear of missing out)
  10. The idea of leaving your phone in a repair shop freaks you out!
  11. You think you can listen and text and talk and text but you cannot!


Now here are some tips to beat the smartphone addiction: 

Turn your phone off an hour before you go to bed.

Do not use your phone while talking to someone.

Do not use your phone as an alarm clock. Get an alarm clock!

No devices at meals.

Have family rules about technology.

The first 30 minutes of your day should be about preparing yourself for a good day. Get up! Eat breakfast! Shower! Dress yourself! Start your day with positive actions.

Create no-phones zones.

Turn your phone off in the car.


My advice to you now is to look up from your phone and really be present!

This is a really importance lesson that we must teach our students!

lifelife moves fastlook around you

This is a great video clip for an online generation.  We are slaves to technology.

‘We are a bunch of idiots with smart phones’.

I love this image! It conveys a lady who is relaxed and fully absorbing what is happening. I love how happy she looks! She is not looking down at her phone or worrying about not dropping her phone or if her phone battery is low.

She is a wonderful example of how to fully live in the moment! She shows us how to be mindful and how to be present!


Book review of a classic novel

I love this image! The staircase has the names of classic novels. Recently with my TY class I instructed them all to pick one classic novel to read and then write a book report about their chosen classic. I gave the students a hand out for this task. The students must answer all the questions on the hand  out in order to write the book report. I set the students a deadline for this task. I have gotten the name of each student’s chosen novel. I cannot wait to read their book report in a few weeks! 🙂

Here is the book report hand out: Book review



Appreciate everything you have.. 


Christmas has become so commercialised! It is important to remember what is really important!  It is important to teach our students what truly matters and to always be grateful. Christmas is a hard time for some people too. You never know what someone is going  through! Check up on those who you think are struggling. It will mean more to them than you will ever realise!

be thankful

Always be kind to others and be grateful for everything that you have. Christmas time is really about the religious significance but it is also about being grateful and spending time with your family and friends.

best gift

good times


Our students need to learn it is not the end of the world if they do not receive a new Naked palette or Justin Bieber concert tickets or FIFA 16 or COD game! They are simply #firstworldproblems



Appreciate everything that you have and remember those who have nothing. Please give something to another no matter how small it is. I like many others had family members who were affected by the recent flooding crisis.

And then there are all the wars that are happening globally right now. Those people are experiencing grieve and they are in constant fear for their lives!

grateful heart.png

Christmas is the most special time of year! It brings families/communities together. It is a time where we are thankful for the year that we have just experienced and we prepare for the new year that is just beginning.




Here is a lovely video clip about the strong connection between being grateful and happy!

You could use this video clip in Section D of Junior Certificate Religious Education or LC non exam RE or SPHE.


I am going to end this post with a quote from one of favourite children’s books ‘How The Grinch Stole Christmas’ by Dr Seuss.

dr sesuss




Inspirational quote- Celebrating small and big achievements!

  As educators we must be our students number 1 fans. We must always celebrate the small achievements as well as the big achievements! Every achievement is important! Always encourage and push your students to achieve! You might be the only one who does! By celebrating each pupils achievements, it portrays to them that you care about them! 😊.