DONEGAL STUDENTS GETTING DOWN AND DIRTY WITH THEIR NATURAL HERITAGE

first_imgMagh Éne College transition-year students with ecologist Billy Flynn (far right), surveying the flora and fauna of the Bundoran seashore.A group of students from across Donegal are investigating their natural heritage.Transition-year students from St. Columba’s Comprehensive School, Glenties and Magh Éne College, Bundoran, County Donegal are exploring deep into what makes their local area tick. Alongside environmental experts Billy Flynn and Éanna Ní Lamhna students from each of the schools are being trained how to survey and record wildlife habitats as well as learning about the species of flora and fauna in their selected study areas.The heritage project entitled ‘Heritage and Habitat in Your Community’ is the first of its kind in County Donegal, and has been commissioned by the County Donegal Heritage Office in association with the County Donegal Heritage Forum, The Heritage Council and Donegal Education Centre.“This project gives the students involved a heightened sense of environmental ownership and a recognition of the importance of Ireland’s natural heritage” said Carol Dempsey, Heritage Research Assistant with Donegal County Council.“It also gives the students a chance to study outdoors allowing them to apply their geographical knowledge to specific wildlife habitats.” Pictured at the initial meeting of the ‘Heritage and Habitat in Your Community’ Initiative in the Donegal Education Centre, Donegal Town are (L to R): Carol Dempsey (Heritage Research Assistant, Donegal County Council), Éanna Ní Lamhna (Ecologist, Flynn Furney Environmental Consultants and broadcaster on RTÉ Radio 1’s ‘Mooney Goes Wild’), Jacqui Dillon (Principal, Magh Éne College), Sally Bonner (Director, Donegal Education Centre) and Joseph Gallagher (Heritage Officer, Donegal County Council).In June of this year, there was an open call to all 27 secondary schools in County Donegal inviting them to participate in this heritage education initiative.Both St. Columba’s Comprehensive School and Magh Éne College were selected from the seven schools that applied to take part in this initiative based on their interest and enthusiasm as well as their ability to integrate this project into their planned study programme.The aims of the project include encouraging local heritage professionals and local teachers to work together to demonstrate the benefits of applied research to their students and to local communities, helping to introduce students to species identification and habitat classification and assisting in the development of transferable skills such as fieldwork, field recording, analysis, mapping and presentation.Ecologists Billy Flynn and Éanna Ní Lamhna, geography teacher Mary Martin and transition-year students from St. Columba’s Comprehensive School in Glenties discuss the wildlife found in a local bog.The project will also highlight the linkages between habitat surveying and the secondary-level curriculum by making guidance notes available to all secondary schools in the county.Transition-year geography students in St. Columba’s Comprehensive School, Glenties have been exploring the unique and protected wildlife of a blanket bog while their counterparts in Magh Éne College, Bundoran, have taken the opportunity to study the main animals and plants found along the Bundoran seashore.The ‘Heritage and Habitat in your Community’ project is ongoing with students completing their fieldwork this month. Ecologists Billy Flynn and Éanna Ní Lamhna along with geography teachers Mary Martin, St. Columba’s Comprehensive School and Geraldine Fox, Magh Éne College will produce guidance notes based on feedback from their respective transition-year students. The Donegal Education Centre will make these teaching resources available to all secondary schools throughout the county.DONEGAL STUDENTS GETTING DOWN AND DIRTY WITH THEIR NATURAL HERITAGE was last modified: November 17th, 2013 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:Donegal County CouncilDonegal studentsHeritageHeritage Officer Joseph Gallagherlast_img read more