Green school committee member showing the class some interesting ideas for reusing container
Welcome to our Green Schools Page
The children have been busy preparing the ground for planting. They have dug in the green manure with the compost we made last autumn and have been watering the beds.
Each classroom has been planting and propagating seeds ready to plant out after Easter: tomatoes, beans, peas, pumpkins, cucumbers, carrots etc.
The senior children prepared some of the ground outside the polytunnel for wildflowers to support pollinators.
This month the children have been enjoying the bounty of the garden. Every child picked an apple, pear or a handful of autumn raspberries for themselves to eat and some children took a ‘gabháil’ of apples home in their bags too! We talked a little about foraging and considered what we could find within our school grounds and on our local hedgerows.
6th class had a Baking Day using the fruit from the garden. Working in their pods, they made: Pear Tart, Plum Crumble, Dorset Apple Cake and Raspberry Bakewell. The aroma was wonderful, and the baking was delicious!
4th class helped to pick the pumpkins & squash and did an amazing amount of clearing in the tunnel. The green stalks of the pumpkins will be the beginning of our compost.
Some of the 5th class pupils helped to make cucumber pickle with onion, mustard, sugar and vinegar. Yummy with some cheese and crackers!
2nd and 3rd class helped to make a squash stew with tomatoes, beans, onions and squash from the tunnel and some herbs from the garden.
Junior and Senior infants made blackberry and apple crumble. No self-respecting child would head into the winter without a bellyful of this sort of vitamin C after all!
Thank God for the harvest!
William Tindal came to speak to the staff about ‘making a plan’ for the polytunnel. He is a wealth of information and we are all going to learn a huge amount as we go along, pupils and staff alike!
The plan for October is to plant cover-crops for over the winter; cereal rye, buckwheat, black oats, and vetch. This will become our green manure. This is horticulture with an ethos of perma-culture and a window on regenerative farming practice! Firstly, we will treat the soil with compost, broadcast the seed (hand spread it) and water it regularly. We want our soil to be as healthy as possible coming into the spring; moist with plenty of worms and lots of little roots. Come the spring, our soil will feel and smell great!
Planting Green Manure – a recount by Laszlo Dani
I went to the polytunnel with my friends from my table. I listened to Mrs Buttimer. I picked out the stones. I pierced the bag of compost. I opened the bag. I put the compost into the bed. I spread it around. I threw the seed on the compost. The plants need water to grow. I want to see the seeds growing.
Before the mid-term break, every pod in the school is going to have an opportunity to carve their own pumpkin and hopefully someone will make us pumpkin soup and pumpkin pie!
The plan for November is to formally begin our compost journey. We are going to use pallets to build a two-bay composting silo at the back of our tunnel. We will put in layers of pumpkin stalks, farmyard manure, cardboard, chicken poop, classroom compostable waste, grass clippings and seaweed. We know the worms are going to find this pile and start having a field day! Every few months we will fork this mixture to allow air into it.
Hopefully at the beginning of December we might enjoy the last of our tomatoes in a leafy green salad. We will also plant our garlic and wait until late summer to harvest it.
St Multose N.S. is a Green School and through this initiative has been awarded 5 flags to date in the following areas:
1. Litter/Waste & Recycling
From the local to the global…
We are hoping to achieve our sixth green flag over the next two years. The theme of this flag is Global Citizenship - Litter and Waste.
Remember our other flags? We began our journey with a focus on Litter and Waste followed by Energy, Water, Travel and Biodiversity. Now we move forward with Global Citizenship - Litter and Waste.
The aim is to maintain and build upon the themes of the previous five flags. While the Junior classes of the school learn about litter and waste management and the importance of the 3Rs (reduce, reuse and recycle), the Senior pupils will learn about Global citizenship in terms of ethical consumption and production, all with a view to inspiring us to cherish this beautiful earth and the people who call it home.
This year's committee includes pupils from Infant classes to 6th:
Senior Infants and First class: Sienna and Savannah
2nd and 3rd class: Lotam and Samuel
4th, 5th and 6th class: Tom, Eve and Harry
Ms Hadden and Ms Curtin are leading the programme with the support of all the classes in St. Multose.
Our parent volunteer is our own local ecologist, Tara Shine.
This is a whole school effort. The Green Schools Committee hopes to explore global citizenship, litter and waste in some fun and interesting ways.
Introducing our very own St. Multose hens: Louis Chickon, Pip Pip, Caramel and Toffee. Our hens raised over €40 from egg money! Many of the Junior and Senior Infants class got to take home fresh eggs. Thank you to our Green Schools committee for cleaning, feeding, watering and checking our hens daily. It was very exciting checking the hen house each morning to see if there were any eggs waiting for us! The pupils loved to check on them at lunch-time, feed them grass and watch their daily antics.
Junior & Senior Infants Biodiversity Projects
Coastal and Woodland animals/mammals. Junior and Senior infants focused on eight different native animals and mammals. We researched and wrote a fact file on each one. Our main focus however was to find out about the threats which these native species face and the policies and practices that are in place to protect them. Pupils worked in groups of two and each pair wrote, sketched and constructed our final project. The animals/mammals we looked at were peregrine falcon, red squirrel, basking shark, long eared owl, thorn-back ray, common lizard, otter and the pine martyn.
Well done to all the junior and senior infant pupils on a wonderful final display. We learned so much about our country's biodiversity.
2nd & 3rd Class Bio-diversity Blog
2nd and 3rd class have recently created a project based on Native Irish trees. The class was grouped to allow each group learn about a certain Irish tree. Each group then researched information about their given tree and presented their information with writing and drawings of the tree. Some of the trees researched were the Willow, the Oak, Ash, Hawthorn and many more. The information was then compiled in one big project and each group presented the information that they gathered in order that all groups would hear about each tree. Children shared information such as how tall the tree can grow, how long it can live for, where it lives to live and presented drawings of the leaves.
3rd & 4th Class Biodiversity project
As part of our work towards our Green Flag, we researched bog lands and rainforests. We learned about these habitats in detail and the various threats they face.
5th & 6th Class Biodiversity Projects
We read about invasive flora and fauna using the field guide from the Invasive Species Ireland website. It was an eye-opener to realise how many their were and how the affect the ecosystem into which they’ve been introduced. In groups, the pupils researched the features of the plants and creatures. They discovered how the species might have been introduced and discussed why this might have happened. They wrote descriptions and made drawings. They discovered how each one has affected the biodiversity of the area in which it exists, including the local area where relevant.