The Outdoor Classroom information session held in November was organised in conjunction with the Galway Education Centre as part of the Galway Science and Technology Festival.
The response from teachers to the event was very positive with presentations from champions Fionnghuala Geragthy of Scoil Chaitríona Senior, Brendan Smith (NUI Galway) and Carmel Burns, director of the Galway Education Centre.
Below are the points outlined, discussed and agreed upon:
1.Outdoor Classroom Kits
Through funding received from the Lifes2Good Foundation for the Galway National Park City (GNPC) initiative, multiple Outdoor Classroom kits will be purchased that will be available free of charge on a loan basis to schools for use in nature (scientific, art etc) studies in Galway’s parks, seashores, waterways, woods and other areas of high biodiversity.
The purpose of these kits is to help in the process of creating an environmentally aware and environmentally active school-going population in Galway city.
The kits could comprise:
- Children’s Raingear
- Trail cameras (to record wildlife activity)
- Magnifying glasses
- Insect Traps
- Bulb planters
- Litter Picks
- Mats (for sitting on)
- Portable Marque tents (limited number only)
- Art sets
2.Outdoor Classroom Content Developers’ Group
Content for a set of Outdoor Classroom worksheets will be put together by a team of teachers involving champions Carmel Burns and Fionnghuala Geraghty.
3. Glór na Oganach (Voice of Children) – February 1st
- The gathering of 13 city primary schools in June under the title of Glór na Oganach (The Voice of Youth) was along with its accompanying survey the first time that young people from multiple schools came together to give their opinions on how the natural environment could be better integrated into the fabric of Galway city.
The results of the survey are available on the Galway National Park City’s website.
A second Glór na Oganach, with representatives (individuals, Green committee and/or multiple classes) from all schools, will take place in February, a month that represents the beginning of Spring in the Celtic calendar with the theme of “Make Galway Greener & Better – What can I do, what can my school do, and what can our city do.”