13 Aug 2022

One Tipperary national school is bringing its garden to life


One Tipperary national school is bringing its garden to life

Pupils from Shronell NS display their planters in their school garden

The staff, pupils, parents and wider community of Shronell National School are rolling up their sleeves and getting stuck into their new school garden, which is very much a work in progress. Since the initial idea came about by the school principal, Orla Hickey, and a beautiful layout designed by Catherine Gallagher, all in the community have rallied behind them to bring this garden to life, providing a safe and vibrant learning experience for all to use.
School principal Orla has thanked the staff, parents and the wider community for making this project a huge success in the school. “Since the beginning of our school project, our garden has offered a place of rest, tranquility and a much welcomed opportunity to spend time outdoors. Our commitment to this project is seen daily but one moment which stands out for me was seen over the Easter break, with staff and parents coming together on a few fine mornings to stencil and paint our sand boxes and planters, and of course to have a cuppa and a chat. It was all worth the effort the first morning back after Easter break seeing the smiles on the children’s faces as they raced towards the garden. And no iPad will ever replicate that sense of achievement. Our vision and dreams for this garden have only just begun.”

The school community wish to thank Tipperary County Council for helping to kick start the project with the help of a grant. The support and hard efforts of the staff and parents throughout the development has made the garden possible and there is a great sense of achievement in seeing it come to fruition.
Orla says that the aim in Shronell NS is to bring life-long social skills and to teach responsibility and teamwork to the pupils. “What better way to promote this than to bring our indoor learning outdoors. Lots of activities have been taught so far, including caring for seeds in their initial stages of planting, ensuring adequate water supply and a space to flourish. What’s better is that no fancy tools are needed to carry out these lessons, as their hands are their shovels. Let us assure you, none of us in the school community are avid seasoned gardeners and we are all learning as we plough this furrow.”
In the garden there is always something to touch, smell, hear and see and hopefully in a few weeks the pupils will be able to taste the fruits of their labours. Encouraging the children to continually plant and harvest and sample the produce, gets them excited about eating and cooking.
Who knows but the next Neven Maguire might be there amongst the pupils in Shronell. Congratulations to all involved in this initiative and continued success with the harvesting and sampling.

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