Colin shows he's fit for success
Study shows sport helps pupils get higher marks
IF all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy, how does time spent playing sport affect Junior Certificate achievement?
Ask Transition Year student Colin Murray (15), who has come up with some useful answers for Junior Cert classes.
According to Colin, playing sport for an average of an hour to an hour and a half every day helps students achieve their potential -- if accompanied by an average of two to three hours of study.
Colin came up with the winning combination after research among last year's Junior Cert class in Blackwater Community School, Co Waterford, of which he was a member.
He has presented his findings to the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition at the RDS, Dublin. The winners will be announced today.
He is one of over 500 finalists and his school has the second largest number of entries in the competition. According to his research, the top performing Junior Cert students were closely followed by pupils who did sport for at least two hours a day and studied for three.
But students who did at least three hours' study with no sport did not do as well as those who did 60 minutes to 90 minutes' sport and two to three hours of study.
Students who played no sport performed worst of all, while those who played less than one hour of sport a day, on average, also turned in poorer results, but they also did less study.
At the other end of the scale, taking part in sport for more than 60 minutes to 90 minutes a day led to a decline in results for boys, but not for girls.
Colin found that pupils playing Gaelic football did better than those playing hurling and camogie, or soccer. His findings also show that students who don't play sport are more likely to study art, French and music and less likely to choose practical subjects.
Also exhibiting at the RDS is Tommy Collison, of Castletroy College, Limerick.
He is the younger brother of the 2005 winner Patrick Collison, who became a millionaire at 19 when he and his then 17-year-old brother John sold their fledgling software company to a Canadian firm.
Tommy (15) explored the attitudes of students in 11 schools to blogging and found that while it hadn't hit the mainstream, it was popular among those who practised it.