Blue Star Programme Camross N.S.

2018- 2019 is our second year to participate in the Blue Star Programme. It has once again proved 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 9th of May we celebrated all things European with our first ever Hand shake for Europe.

Section 1: History

The Normans

4th, 5th and 6th classes studied The Normans, where they came from, what lands they conquered and how they lived. We also learned that they left their mark on the environment of Europe through the many Norman castles we can find throughout Ireland and Europe. We attempted to build our own Norman castles out of cardboard, wood, recycled materials and Lego.
4th and 5th classes read the novel Strongbow by Morgan Llywelyn and then created their own Limerick poems based on the Norman Knight.
4th and 5th also created Facebook profiles based on the characters they met in their novel.
4th and 5th following the reading of their novel Strongbow designed new covers for the novel.

Wooden Horse of Troy

2nd and 3rd classes studied the Greek story of Helen of Troy. They used the story of Helen to inspire these wonderful works of art.

World War II

5th and 6th completed projects on World War II, including the life of Anne Frank.

Women who've made a Difference

4th and 5th class researched famous women throughout history including European women who've made a difference.

European women who've made a difference include Florence Nightengale, Anne Frank, Maureen O'Hara, Emmeline Pankhurst, Constance Markievicz and Coco Chanel.

The Tudors

4th and 5th class learnt about the reign of the Tudors and the Plantations of Ireland. We researched the importance they placed on their coat of arms.

The Romans

2nd and 3rd class researched the Ancient Romans.

Section 2: Geography

Bridges of Europe

4th and 5th classes were lucky this year to work with local artist Alan Meredith. As part of our Artist and teacher partnership we decided to research the Bridges of Europe, draw a plan of our bridge, locate our bridge in Europe and create a model of our bridge. We then invited the other classes to explore our work as part of our Europe Day presentations.

Working on our European Bridges. Scroll down to see our finished bridges, which we showcased at our Europe Day.

Countries of Europe

All classes researched the different countries of the European Union. Finding out about their flag, location, neighbouring countries, capital city, language spoken, area, famous people, famous landmarks, foods, exports, head of state, major rivers and mountains.

E.U. countries projects.
2nd and 3rd E.U. Countries Projects
2nd and 3rd Projects on Ireland and in particular Laois.

The Natural Heritage of Europe - Bats

2nd and 3rd researched the bats of Europe and learnt about the different species including, the Pipistrelle Bat and the Natterer's Bat found throughout Europe.

Some beautiful bat art created by 2nd and 3rd class.

European Natural Heritage

4th and 5th class explored the natural heritage of Europe. In groups we researched the native trees, flowers, animals, insects and plants of Europe. We presented our projects using Adobe Spark to other classes in the school. Below are some of the interesting facts we found out. Sean O'Farrell of Heritage in Schools programme visited us to teach us about the vast natural heritage we have on our doorstep and how important it is for us to take care of this heritage for future generations.

  1. In Finland they enjoy birch tea, made from bark shavings of the birch tree.
  2. The Horse Chestnut while commonly found in Ireland is native to Greece.
  3. The Cinnabar moth is a native moth to Europe and loves feeding on ragwort.
  4. Around half the world’s population of wild Bluebells grow in Ireland and the UK.
  5. There are 11 species of badger, grouped into 3 types, the Melinae (Eurasian badgers), Mellivorinae (Honey badger) and Taxideinae (American badger).
Creating and presenting projects is fun.

Click on any of the links below to see our projects on the natural heritage of Europe.

Native Birds of Europe

2nd and 3rd carried out research on the native birds of Europe.

Section 3: Culture and Creativity

Under this section we explored lots of different European artists and the different customs and celebrations across Europe.

Pablo Picasso - Spanish Artist

2nd and 3rd class explored the art of Pablo Picasso and created these wonderful Picasso inspired paintings.

German Expressionists

In the early 20th century a small group of painters decided to rebel. Instead of stiff, straightforward compositions, they loaded their canvases with vivid, clashing shards of colour and pared-down, grossly distorted forms. The works that resulted were raw, deeply emotive, and shocking. These artists became known as the German Expressionists: some of the leading expressionist painters are Wassily Kandinsky, Franz Marc, and Gabriele Münter.

1st and 2nd class explored the expressionist style of art.

Bluebell Art

Following our exploration and study of our natural heritage we took inspiration from our environment and created our own 3D Bluebell art.

Banksy - British Artist

5th and 6th class explored the work of street artist Banksy and then created their own Banksy inspired drawings.

Celtic Brooches

5th and 6th studied the contribution of the Celts to European culture and art and then created wonderful Celtic inspired brooches out of clay.

The Craft of Weaving

4th and 5th studied the Industrial revolution. John Kay invented the flying shuttle in 1733 and enabled weaving of wider fabric as well as made it faster. He was an Englishman who lived much of his life in France.

4th and 5th class exploring weaving

European Natural Heritage

As a school for National Tree week we explored the natural environment of our locality. We identified a number of native European trees and flora and fauna of our locality.

Exploring our natural heritage

Paul Signac - French Artist

4th and 5th class explored the work of artist Paul Signac and his pointillist style

Some of our Pointilist style art work inspired by Paul Signac.

Vincent van Gogh

We explored the art of Vincent van Gogh and in particular his Sunflowers

Umbrella Art

Juniors and Seniors learnt about the Portuguese Ágitagueda art festival, where hundreds of cute umbrellas are hung over promenades in the streets of Águeda in Portugal each July. The beautiful art installation has earned world fame for the place. In groups Juniors and Seniors created their own umbrella art installations to hang around our school.

Juniors and Seniors umbrella installations.


4th and 5th class studied the English Romantic Poet Christina Rossetti and in particular her poem 'What is Pink? Then we used her poem as inspiration to write our own poems about colour and create our own tonal works of art on our favourite colour. Click the link below to listen to the poem 'What is Pink?'

Our What is Pink Inspired Poem

What is Pink? A pig is pink by the water’s brink.

What is Red? Blood is red, dripping from your head.

What is Blue? The E.U. flag is blue, to all Bienvenue.

What is White? Bog cotton is white, what a glorious sight.

What is Yellow? Pussy willow is yellow and fluffy like marshmallow.

What is Green? Ireland is green and so serene.

What is Violet? Bluebells are violet, such a wonderful sight.

What is Orange? The sun is orange, just the sun.

By 4th & 5th class

What is Green? What is Red? What is Blue?

Roman Mosaics

2nd and 3rd class explored the Roman art of Mosaic making. Then they created their own mosaics.

Roman Mosaics.

Fairy Tales

Juniors and Seniors listened to the fairytale of the Three Little Pigs. The they used recycled milk cartons to create their own little pigs.

Lots of little pigs.

Gustav Klimt - Austrian Artist

4th and 5th explored the paintings by famous Austrian artist Gustav Klimt, he is well known for his use of patterns. Actually, some of Klimt’s most famous paintings were created by adopting the style that was ornate, elaborate and decorative. The patterns Klimt used were inspired by Byzantine, Greek and Egyptian art.

We created our own Klimt style pattern art in the form of ornate snowflakes.
We also created more Klimt style pattern art using toilet roll inserts cut in jagged lines to create our own colourful and ornate firework art.

Georges Seurat - French Artist

Juniors and Seniors read the story the Fish Who Could Wish and then created Pointillist fish art inspired by the work of French artist Georges Seurat.

André Derain - French Artist

4th and 5th class explored the fauvism art style of bold, vivid, vibrant colours. Derain painted multiple pictures of the Thames and Tower Bridge. These London paintings remain among his most popular work. We explored the colour wheel and created our own Fauvist style works of art.

Our colour wheel art.

Oíche Shamhna / Halloween

While Oíche Shamhna is a big festival in Ireland we wanted to explore the customs and celebrations of Halloween across Europe. We learnt that Ostend has gained the reputation of Belgium’s Halloween city. Each year, from the beginning of October, Ostend starts celebrating Halloween with elaborate decorations, creepy creatures roaming the streets, and various ghoulish events taking place all over the city.

That in France at the end of October, the city of Limoges comes to life with a plethora of events, including street shows, themed fairs, costume parades, storytelling festivals, and colorful parties.

1st and 2nd Class explored the traditions of Halloween and created some beautifully scary art.
4th and 5th created Halloween Haunted Houses and we looked at the architecture of Prague in the Czech Republic for inspiration with its Gothic architecture it is the Halloween fairytale of Europe, with its stunning architecture, winding medieval lanes, and mysterious allure, is a place that gives you chills up the spine whether it’s Halloween or not.

Of course you couldn't explore Halloween without exploring the many games associated with this festival which finds its roots in Europe.

Oh the fun we had!

Section 4: Institutions of the E.U.

To celebrate Europe Day on Thursday May the 9th the whole school community participated in a 'Handshake for Europe' to recognise the importance of cooperation and solidarity across Europe and in our own lives each day.

In October we held our first of two Europe Day celebrations, which was an exhibition of our Bridges of Europe for all other classes and answered all their questions. We showcased the varied and beautiful architecture throughout Europe.

We had some spooky visitors at our Europe Day Bridge Exhibition.

Our second Europe Day Celebration was due to be held on Tuesday the 7th of May when we had planned a visit from Sean Kelly MEP, but unfortunately he was unable to attend on the day. Thankfully he has agreed to visit us in June, when we intend to have a joint celebration of Grandparents Day and Europe Day. We will invite our grandparents to a European themed day when we will serenade them with songs from across Europe and we dazzle them with our knowledge of all things European and E.U. related. We plan to have a Q and A session with Sean Kelly about his work in the E.U. and what a day in the life of an MEP looks like. Finally we plan to serve refreshments to our guests with a European theme. We will post photos on our twitter page @Camrossns of the event after it takes place. We are really looking forward to our Europe themed event.

4th and 5th classes explored the Europa EU website above, we particularly enjoyed the games. We then invited other classes to our classroom to participate in the games. We had lots of fun learning about how the EU works.

4th and 5th class held European Union mock elections, where three different parties - an Páirtí Gorm, MMKOCA Party and the Fianna McKeon Party. The three parties presented their policies and plans for Europe's future to other classes, who then voted on the winning party. Their policies ranged from Global Warming, Climate Change, Animal Welfare, Homelessness, Agricultural Support, Special Educational Support to name a few. It was a close contest, but MMKOCA eventually ran out winners, with their platform of Climate Change and Supporting Farmers in the face of Brexit.

4th and 5th candidates making their cases to their electorate.
Making posters for our European Union mock elections.

1st and 2nd created a memory game using the 28 flags of the E.U. countries.


Created with an image by moritz320 - "europe flag demokratie"

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