Blue Star Programme Final Report Camross N.S. 2018

This is the first year we have taken part in the Blue Star Programme and we have found it to be an engaging, enlightening and enjoyable programme. All classes from Junior Infants to sixth class explored Europe under the four key areas. 1. History 2. Geography 3. Culture & Creativity 4. Institutions of the E.U. On the 11th of May we celebrated all things European with our first ever Europe Day celebrations.

Section 1: History

Pupils in 3rd to 6th class took part in our Scarecrow Building Competition. The theme this year was famous Europeans.

Some of the entries included President Michael D. Higgins, Princess Diana, Stephen Hawking, President Mary McAleese, Pirate Queen Grace O'Malley, Queen Elizabeth I, Tom Crean.

Pupils in 3rd & 4th class learnt all about Ancient Greece and then created and presented projects on Ancient Greece.

We presented our projects to all classes in the school.

Section 2: Geography

Throughout the year pupils in 3rd & 4th class as part of our Active Schools Programme decided to Run around Europe during our active break each morning. We ran from Laois to Cork, to Cardiff, to London, to Paris, to Brussels to Amsterdam. We are currently on our way to Berlin. Every lap of our playground represented 1km, to date we've run over 1,250km.

We ran in all weathers. We discovered Europe is a big place and some countries are a long distance from Camross.

Senior Infants and First Class created a memory games based on the flags of Europe. We had great fun trying to identify all the flags on Europe Day. How many do you know?

5th and 6th class pupils built replicas of some famous European landmarks and structures from Lego

London Bridge and the Belfast built Titanic.

Pupils in classes 2nd to 6th researched the countries of the E.U., created projects on their country of choice and then presented them to the school community. We also put them up on display in our hall on Europe Day for our parents and grandparents to see and ask us questions on the countries.

We learnt lots about each country in the E.U. The capital city, population, famous landmarks, main mountains and rivers, famous people and the currency and flag of each country.

Section 3: Culture & Creativity

3rd & 4th class explored the work of artist Andy Goldsworthy. Andy Goldworthy is a British sculptor, photographer and environmentalist producing site-specific sculpture and land art situated in natural and urban settings. He lives and works in Scotland. They then collected natural materials from the local environment and set about creating their own 'Land Art'.

We had great fun being creative and using our environment to make art.

Junior & Senior Infants listened to Italian composer Vivaldi's 'Four Seasons' and then created beautiful trees depicting the four seasons.

Pupils used fabric and fibre to create their summer, spring, winter and autumn trees.

Pupils in 3rd & 4th class studied the work of Austrian artist Gustav Klimt in particular his portrait entitled 'Adele Bloch-Bauer' or 'The Lady in Gold'. Then they created their own 'Lady in Black' inspired by Klimt's work.

We coloured in a page with 'Adele's head and shoulders copied on it using wax crayons. Then we painted over the crayons with black paint. Then finally we scratched out shapes and swirls in the style of Klimt to uncover our own beautiful 'Ladies in Black'

2nd Class listened to the music of David Bowie an English musician and in particular his masterpiece Starman and Ziggy Stardust, then they created their own artistic masterpieces inspired by his music.

'There's a Starman floating in the sky"

3rd & 4th Class following their research of the Ancient Greeks and learning about the story of Icarus and Daedalus, explored the work of French Artist Henri Matisse and in particular his famous work 'Icarus'. Then they created their own art based on the Greek story and inspired by the work of Matisse.

2nd Class read the poetry of famous English Romantic Poet William Wordsworth and in particular his poem 'Daffodils'. They then created their own daffodil inspired artwork.

"I wandered lonely as a cloud That floats on high o'er vales and hills, When all at once I saw a crowd, A host, of golden daffodils."

3rd & 4th class read the novel Granpa's Great Escape by David Walliams which centres on a grandad who believes he is still fighting in World War II and has been captured by the Nazi's and imprisoned in a war camp. It also tells the story of his grandson Jack who helps him escape from his nursing home/Nazi prison camp 'Twilight Towers'. Then we completed activities based on our novel.

We really enjoyed our class novel Grandpa's Great Escape. We highly recommend the book.

Juniors & Seniors listened to the Story 'The Rainbow Fish' by Swiss author Marcus Pfister. While we know Switzerland is not a member of the E.U. however all of it's neighbours are E.U. members and it is also a great European nation. The story tells the tale of the Rainbow Fish and how important it is to have friends. It helped Juniors and Seniors understand how the E.U. countries work together to help and support each other. How the stronger more powerful nations - 'The Rainbow Fish' help and share their wealth with other nations and together all feel better, stronger and united. Then they created their own Rainbow Fish based on the story.

What a beautiful display, click on the button below to enjoy the story The Rainbow Fish read by Ernest Borgnine.

3rd & 4th class listened to and learnt the words of The Green Fields of France to perform at our Europe Day celebrations. Then we drew pictures depicting scenes from the famous World War I ballad.

Click the button below to listen to Caoimhe Mooney's version of The Green Fields of France which we used to help us perform our own version of the ballad.

2nd class pupils explored the work of Dutch painter Piet Mondrian and linked his work to their own numeracy work on shapes, lines and angles. Then they created wonderfully colourful artwork showing as many different sized squares and rectangles and lots of lines and angles.

Piet Mondrian was a Dutch painter at the start of the 20th century. In 1920, he set out his position as an artist with "De Stijl", where he explained that the essence of his artist ideas and themes, was simple. Painting is composed of colour and line. He was and is still considered the founder of Modern Art.

We studied the work of Italian artist Leonardo Da Vinci, in particular his world famous Mona Lisa. Then we used Mona Lisa's beguiling smile and created our own Mona Lisa's but we put her in more modern settings like a hairdressers, a car, Croke Park or the swimming pool.

We had lots of fun updating Mona Lisa.

Check out our finished masterpieces below.

We would give Leonardo DaVinci a run for his money.

Section 4: Institutions of the E.U.

On Friday the 11th of May we had a joint celebration. We celebrated Grandparents Day and Europe Day. We invited our grandparents to a European themed day when we serenaded them with songs from across Europe and we dazzled them with our knowledge of all things European and E.U. related. 5th & 6th presented the foods and customs of 10 European countries. 3rd & 4th showed a video explaining how the E.U. works as well as holding a Europe Day quiz on the E.U. using the website below.

3rd & 4th class playing 'Let's Explore Europe on the smartboard for Europe Day. Please click on the below links to view the videos we used on Europe Day to explain the institutions of the E.U. and the formation and growth of the E.U.

A selection of photos from 5th & 6th class Europe Day presentation. They informed all classes about each country and allowed us sample foods from each country.

Great work by 5th & 6th class, they really gave us a flavour and taste of each of the European Countries they presented.

Europe Day celebrations

We hope that this will be our first Europe Day's of many to come.

Juniors & Seniors sang Tingalayo a Spanish song and Save All Your Kisses For Me from the United Kingdom Senior Infants and First Class sang Fra Martino an Italian Song and Old MacDonald hat'ne Farm the German version of the well loved nursery rhyme. Second Class sang Edelweiss - the well known Austrian Lullaby and All Kinds of Everything. Third and Fourth class sang Waterloo by Swedish band ABBA, Que Sera Sera a Doris Day classic with Spanish lyrics and The Green Fields of France a World War I ballad. Fifth and Sixth class sang Titanium by French artist David Guetta and 99 Red Balloons by German artist Nena.

We invited our local newspaper 'Laois Today' along to our Grandparents and Europe Day celebrations to sample the excitement of the day and let a wider audience see all the work we've undertaken in participating in Our first ever Blue Star Programme. Click below to see their report on the day and view photographs of the day.

The booklet we produced for our Grandparents Day and Blue Star European Day

We invited M.E.P. Mairead McGuinness Vice President of the European Union to attend our Europe Day on May 11th but unfortunately she had to reschedule her visit and hopes to visit us later this month when we hope to serenade her with our repertoire of European songs and dazzle her with our knowledge of the E.U. We also plan to pick her brain on the workings of the E.U. and what her role as an M.E.P. entails. Watch this space for photos of the visit.

Thank you for taking the time to view our Blue Star Programme Final Report. Hope you enjoyed viewing it as much as we enjoyed compiling all the work.

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