Today with Sean O'Rourke

    Monday - Friday at 10am


    Early Childhood Care and Education

    Roisín O'Hara spoke to Sean about Early Childhood Care and Education Schemes. The ECCE Scheme provides a free year of early childhood care and education for children of pre-school age.


    Tracy Coyne's Spooky Halloween Recipes

    Tracy Coyne, winner of the Great Irish Bake Off, joins Sean with a couple of Halloween recipes which are easy and fun to do with children.

    Jelly Monsters – Great treats for Trick ‘r Treaters on Halloween Night!

     What you need…

    1 Block of Vanilla Ice Cream

    1 Pack of Lime Jelly

    A package of Oreos Crumbled up

    A couple of drops of food colouring to make it really hideous…

    Small Jars or Disposable Clear Party Glasses

    Permanent Black Marker

    What you do

    Allow the ice cream to melt at room temperature or in the microwave and set aside.

    Melt the block of Jelly in the microwave and mix it with the ice cream until well blended and slimy green adding a few drops of green food colouring if it isn’t gross enough…

    Pour the mixture into little glass yoghurt jars or disposable clear party cups and allow to set in the fridge overnight.

    In the morning, sprinkle the Oreo Hair onto each jelly and use the black marker to draw the scariest and funniest Halloween faces you can…

    Hooting Owl Cakes

    What you need…

    125g Self Raising Flour

    125g Caster Sugar

    125g Softened Butter

    2 Eggs

    37g Milk

    Pinch of Baking Powder

    Drop of Vanilla Essence

    400g Icing Sugar & 50g Cocoa Powder mixed with a few tablespoons of warm water to make a stiff icing

    12 Oreo Cookies

    24 Brown Smarties or M&Ms and 12 Orange Smarties or M&Ms

    Line a 12 hole bun tin with paper cases.

    What you do

    Pre-heat the oven to 180c

    Mix the Flour, Butter, Sugar, Eggs, vanilla and milk together in a mixer until you have a batter of dropping consistency. Don’t worry about keeping air in this mixture because you want your little cakes to have a flattish top to decorate with the owls face.

    Spoon a small amount into each bun paper using all of the mixture between the 12.

    Bake for 16-18 minutes or until the buns are golden and spring back to the light touch of your finger.

    Allow to cool on a rack while you mix the icing.

    Mix the sugar and cocoa together and add the water a little at a time until you have a tight, but dropping consistency – if the icing is too runny it will take an age to dry so be cautious when adding the water. Spread this scantily on the top of each mini cake as a base for sticking on the Owl face.

    Decorate the little faces by splitting each Oreo in half and using them as eyes, adding a brown Smartie to each for the pupils. Then add an orange Smartie on its side between the eyes as the little Owl’s beak.

    Halloween Smiles

    What you need…

    2 Green or Red Apples, cored and sliced into wedges.

    Peanut Butter or Nutella

    A handful of Mini-Marshmallows

    What you do

    Spread one side of each apple slice with the peanut butter or Nutella, which ever you’re using and stick the mini-marshmallows onto one slice to form little teeth, then top with a second slice securing the teeth in place.

    Craft Ghost Pops for the Trick ‘r Treaters

    What you need…

    Some Chuppa Chups or other pop stick lollipops

    A piece of an old bed sheet torn into little 15cm x 15cm squares

    Some Coloured Ribbon

    A Fine Tipped Black Marker or Pen

    What you do

    Cut the ribbons into short lengths but long enough to tie around the pop sticks.

    Wrap each pop in a square of cloth securing the ends on the stick with your fingers. Tie a bow with the ribbons and draw a ghost face on each pop.

    If you’re too little to tie the ribbons, use little elastic bands instead – you’ll find them in craft shops, but if you’re nice to your butcher he’ll give you the little red elastic ties they use for stuffing meat which will add a little colour too!

    See Tracy's Facebook page for more.




    To lose a child is the most devastating loss that any parent could ever imagine or endure, but to lose a child you never had the chance to know brings a different type of grief to bear.

    Deirdre Pierce McDonnell, who has suffered two miscarriages and Sheila Power who is a psychotherapist and also a trained midwife who worked on the bereavement team at Holles Street Maternity Hospital for a number of years join Sean this morning.



    Roisín O'Hara joins Sean in studio to discuss anti-bullying policies in schools, with new procedures and guidelines issued last year by the Department of Education.

    Sessions organised by the National Parents Council happen around the country and are free to attend. Roisín attended one of these sessions on how to deal with bullying, how to talk to your child and she found them very helpful as a parent of a primary school child.

    For a full list of venues see here


    Kinsale Youth Support Services

    Brian O'Connell met with a community group in Kinsale that is helping teens to talk about their mental health issues.

    Full Details of the Service are available here.


    Balancing work life and being a Dad

    Eamon Ryan, Leader of the Green Party and Dave Robbins, journalist and lecturer discuss how they balance their work lives with being a dad.


    Childhood Anxiety

    Anxiety disorders, as they’re called, affect many children.  So, how do parents know when a child’s anxiety or fear is just a passing phase or something more serious.  And how best to approach the issue. Róisín O’Hara has been looking into this area.


    Bean an Tí

    Well, it’s that time of year again where thousands of our young school goers descend on Gaeltacht areas to do courses in the Irish language for 3 weeks at a time.  We’ve heard plenty about how the students fare down through the years, but what of the Bean an Tí, who is required to become a “surrogate mother” to these young teenagers over the Summer? How do they cope with the demands.

    Well, Róisín O’Hara, returned to her home turf of Connemara recently and spoke to many at the coalface . She joined us from the Galway studio


    Summer Camps

    Róisín O’Hara joined us again to discuss parenting issues. This week we’re looking at summer camps. With primary schools closing for the holidays next week, it can be very difficult for many parents, particularly those who are working, to find an alternative to school to both occupy and care for children. But, as you’ve found out Róisín, these Summer Camps are widely available for all age groups and are widely used, but parents should be wary.



    Sleep deprivation is a huge issue for many parents. Journalist and mother, Róisín O’Hara, was back with us to discuss this issue.

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