We Love Our Environment!
One of the strands of the Educate Together Programme is Environmental Ethics, and we have many ways through which we weave this aspect of ethos into our daily lives.
Firstly, we follow the An Taisce schools programme, the Green Flag Programme. Secondly we have our wonderful school gardens built by the school community, and our outside classroom, where we can work outdoors and picnic when the weather obliges! Thirdly we have the beautiful IADT campus to explore. This has not just lovely trees, but an orchard and Marian’s Wood on the far side of the campus. This is a native Irish woodland, planted by teachers about 7 years ago, and is an amazing resource for us.
Over the years the children spend in METNS they actively engage in the outdoor world and plant, take care, of and harvest vegetables. We foster a culture of love for the environment, and the children organically develop an interest in caring for it and making sustainable choices.
Those sustainable choices are investigated through our Green Flag programme and we passionately believe in THE POWER OF 1. Every little action helps towards the biodiversity of our environment and this sense of empowerment and the children’s joyful commitment, will make a difference to the planet in future years.
Our Fabulous Environment
We at METNS, are the luckiest school to have such a fantastic campus. We are set within the beautiful IADT campus, with its orchard and woodland, and around our school we have three gardens. The front garden comes into its own in spring when the hundreds of bulbs which we have received free from Woodies, Sallynoggin, blossom into joyous life. The Den garden is wonderful summer colour and our back garden is the ‘working’, outside classroom. The children plant vegetables in the Spring, take care of the produce as it grows, and harvests in the autumn. It is also great space for the entire school community to gather, hold coffee mornings and to wait for children as they finish up after-school activities.
Green Flag History
An Taisce run a Green Flag programme to encourage all schools in Ireland to work towards environmental care and sustainability. It is one of the most successful initiatives ever brought into the education system.
We joined the programme in 2003, and have earned 5 flags to date.
The Green Team
The Green Team is a council of representatives from classes 1st-6th; two or three from each of the 12 classes. Each year elections are held, and children are elected to the team. They meet approximately every 2 weeks, and work on current themes and projects.
The children bring our ideas, back to the classes; the classes discuss and follow their individual ideas and pathways through the themes; these ideas in turn are brought back to the team meetings. Although the team leads the charge, every child in the school is actively engaged in our ethical environmental programmes.
Our green team members act as energy monitors, water conservationists, re-cyclers and environmental champions throughout the school and it is a great opportunity to grow in leadership skills.