St Brendan’s NS students learn about climate changeGary Ibbotson 01 Dec 2022
St Brendan’s National School in Loughshinny, Skerries, took part in a workshop recently aimed at introducing students to the problem of climate change and their carbon footprint.
Organised by Junior Achievement Ireland and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the ‘Climate Change and You’ workshop was brought to 700 fourth and fifth class students nationwide.
Students analysed their own carbon footprint as well as completing an energy audit of their classroom.
They also brainstormed ways to reduce their impact on climate change.
EPA volunteer Stephen Fennell says that students are already aware of how they can protect their environment.
“It was a fantastic experience to help students develop an interest and understanding of climate change and environmental issues at primary school level,” he said.
“It is inspirational to see the level of knowledge the students already have on this topic.
“It was great to be able to assist with building their understanding of how they can help protect their environment.
“The students I worked with at St. Brendan’s National School Loughshinny got stuck into the interactive activities.
“It was so much fun. I may have gotten as much out of the experience as the students!”
Niall Mulvey, principal at St. Brendan’s National School in Loughshinny said the workshop was a great benefit to the students.
“We have been involved in the Junior Achievement programme from the very start, and it has been a huge success at our school,” he said.
“The programmes have been interesting and varied from climate change and sustainability to science, innovation, and the power of design.
“It’s fantastic to see volunteers from all walks of life coming into schools and sharing their expertise; the children love hearing a different voice and getting an insight into a variety of careers and life choices,” he said.
“The programme has also enabled students to go on trips to companies, colleges, and exhibitions and to ask questions, share their ideas and their hopes for the future.”
Since 2016, more than 200 EPA volunteers have reached 5,000 young people through Junior Achievement (JA) programmes designed to encourage young people to remain in education and help them to develop the skills they need to succeed in a changing world.
“This is the fourth year of this project and the interest from educators to ensure their students can enjoy working with EPA volunteers on climate change and related environmental issues increase each year,” a spokesperson says.
“We are delighted that the EPA has extended its sponsorship to allow us to respond positively to requests from teachers and involve even more students this year.”