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Green Schools

In September 2010 St Mary's formed a new Green Schools Committee, and we are working towards our first flag. This page is to keep everyone updated with our progress.

Green Flag Raised!

From the Principal - Following the end-of-term Assembly we moved out into the yard where we were very proud to raise our Green Flag.  

I would like to thank all the members of the Green Schools Committee for their work to ensure our success in earning this flag. We also thank the past pupils who helped as we began our efforts.  Thanks to Jim Brown for making sure that the flagpole was in place and ready for our ceremony.  

Next year we will keep working to ensure that St. Mary’s stays GREEN in terms of litter and waste management and we will also begin to work towards our second green flag. 


Collecting our Green Flag!

We went to Croke Park on Friday 18th May to collect our first green flag. We left the school at 10:30am. St. Brigid’s School and Newtown School came on the same bus as us. We arrived at Croke Park at 11:45am. First we went upstairs where we signed in. We got little green school bags and got our picture taken with a foot, a raindrop and a light bulb. They are mascots for some of the Green Flags – energy, water conservation. We then got soup and sandwiches, a cup of tea or coffee and a dessert. Next we went into a big room where they had the ceremony and presented us with our green flag. The last thing we did was get loads of pictures taken with the green flag.

On the way home, we stopped at Supermac’s. We arrived back at the school at 6:10pm. We really enjoyed our day!

By Dominic, Shannon and Ellen

Green Schools End of Term Report, March 2012

On the 13th of March, Fionnuala, from the Green Schools board, came to have a look at our school. She was very impressed with our work and us having a Green Schools page on our website. She said someone will tell us if we got the green flag sometime in May. We hope we will get it as it would be great for the school.

Our Clean-up day will probably be in May, which will be fun as there are lots of things to do.

That’s all for the moment from Green Schools!

Bye, Ellen, Kara and Rachel F, 6th class

Green Schools Report - March 2012

We have just done a green schools poster competition with our motto ‘Less Mess More Success’ as the theme. The winners are Martha from Junior Infants, Oliver from Senior Infants, Conor from 1st class, Charlie from 2nd class, Liam from 3rd class, Ananya from 4th class, Toby 5th class and Jack from 6th class. The Green Schools Committee is organising for WEEE Ireland to come to school to do a collection of electrical waste during the third term. We will let you know when the date is organised. On the 13th of March we have a visitor coming to assess what we have been doing for the green flag. On Friday 24th February we got 20 green lights in our traffic light system so on Monday we got our second Green Schools’ homework pass.

By Shannon 6th Class

The Green Schools Committee is busy preparing for a visitor who will be coming to the school on 13th March to talk to the committee about the ongoing work and to assess our application for a Green Flag. Well done to the committee for all their work.


As part of our work for our Green Flag we looked again at recycling and in each classroom the pupils used waste materials to create a construction.

Pupils in junior classes created pieces of art from recyclable materials and some of the finished work included binoculars, robots and fish tanks.

The older pupils tried to create new uses for waste materials and created bins from empty ice cream tubs and designer bags from old jeans.

Our project helped us to realise that we can use many of the things we throw out in new and creative ways.


Green Schools Report - November 2011

At the moment in Green Schools we are starting to collect newspapers for an animal charity called ASH. They use the newspapers for the animals bedding, and, since they use so much of it they are always running out so we thought it would be a good idea to help.

We are also working on recycling projects and everyone’s is turning out really well. We used old jeans and cardboard boxes and lots of other stuff too. All classes are going to do a presentation of our projects when everyone is finished.

We have changed our bin company to AES so we now have three bins; a compost one, which is brown, the waste bin, which is green and the recycling bin, which is blue. We have been doing well on reducing our waste and we hope that with the new brown bin we will do even better.

The last thing is that we collected 27 bags of clothes for the Umbro Clothing Collection.

For anyone who wants to know, we’ve got 11 green lights now.

By Ellen, Shannon and Kara 6th Class


Our Vegetable Garden This Summer

Cleanup Day

The Incredible Edibles Garden Challenge

by Annabel

This year 3rd and 4th class decided to take part in the Incredible Edibles challenge. As we were one of the first 1,000 schools to register we were given a 1m square raised bed and cloche!

We were sent a pack with bags of compost, germination pots, seeds, plants and a DVD. Ms. Brennan put the raised bed together. A group from the class assembled the cloche or mini-greenhouse with Mr. Hickey.

On March 11th we planted the potatoes into grow bags. We planted the carrots outside in the raised bed. The turnip seeds were planted into the peat pots. It took the seeds about a week to germinate. On March 31st we planted the strawberry plants outside in the raised bed.

We also planted lettuce seeds into peat pots. They came up in about a week. We then planted the turnip seeds in the peat pots out in the raised bed. They were hardened off outside first.

Our job everyday is to water all the plants. We also have to keep turning the plants in pots as they grow towards the light.

We have to put the plants outside for the day to harden them off and bring them back in for the night. We had a great time planting the seeds and taking care of the seedlings.

Diary Update, March 2011

Green School Report: by Marc

The whole school have recently decided on a school slogan which is

‘Less mess, More success!’

By working together we have also managed to get 20 green days on the litter check which means we have a night off homework! Every day 1 or 2 pupils from 6th class go out with litter pickers with four other pupils from different class each week to check the yard for litter.

We planted flowers in the flower bed between the two prefabs a while ago and have noticed that they are starting to bloom.

We have been watching how much waste goes out each week in our waste bin. We are down to between ½ and 2/3 of a bin when there used to be an overflowing bin every week. Pupils from 6th class are also making a picture of our waste bin for the infant classes to help them to know how much waste is in our bin each week.

Thank you to all who helped by supporting our recent clothing collection for Umbra. We collected 31 bags of used clothes and the money raised will go to help the Friends of St. Luke’s Hospital.

The Green School Committee is going to organise a clean-up day before the Easter Holidays. We hope that as many parents and friends of the school as possible will be able to come and help us on Friday 8th April from 12:00 until the end of the school day. We hope to clean and tidy the area around the school and the church. We also hope to do some planting on that day. If you have some time to spare we would like you to come and help us.

Green Schools Diary Update, November 2010

We have started doing green schools from the start of September and we have improved a lot since we started.

• First we have reduced an overflowing bin to a 2/3 of a bin then to under ½ a bin.

• Secondly we have started to do traffic lights which means that if we get under 5 pieces of litter we get a green traffic light, if we get over 5 pieces we get an orange traffic light and if we get over 10 pieces we get red traffic light.

• Then we decided that if we get 20 green traffic lights for the whole school we all get a night off homework.

• At our last committee meeting we decided that we needed a slogan for the school and we are still thinking of one.

• We have put up week chart on the 5th and 6th classroom window showing what traffic lights we get for each day of the week.

• We are also doing a traffic light chart for the yard. One class checks the yard for litter a week each so we’re going down the classes to give each class a turn. We started at 6th class then to 5th class girls then 5th class boys because there’s so many of us and then it just went on and on.......

That’s what we’ve been doing for the last few weeks in the school for the Green Schools.


Leaf Composting

On Monday 11th October all of Third and Fourth class went out into the playground to gather leaves. We organised ourselves into groups armed with black sacks, brushes and gloves. The sacks had about ten holes. We gathered three full sacks of leaves. We put some water, soil and grass cuttings into the bags. We gave the sacks a shake and put them behind Mrs. Meade’s classroom. We wait for Mother Nature to do the rest!


These are some posters created by the pupils: