With only weeks to go, the race is on for primary school pupils throughout Northern Ireland to nominate their 'Green Teacher of the Year' as the final leg of the competition comes to a close on 19th October. This unique competition organised by Belfast Harbour and Action Renewables, rewards primary school teachers for taking responsibility for the environment and eco issues.
Entries from across Northern Ireland have been coming in since the annual award, now in its fourth year, launched in May. Green Teacher judge David Knott, Environmental Manager at Belfast Harbour, visited St Patrick's Primary School in Holywood to give pupils and teachers green tips and check out what eco activities they have been getting involved in.
To give their teacher the opportunity to be crowned 'Belfast Harbour Green Teacher of the Year 2012' pupils must tell Action Renewables, in no more than 100 words, about the hard work their teacher does to consider the environment and educate children about 'green' issues.
All entries will be judged by a panel of experts, including David Knott, Environmental Manager at Belfast Harbour, Angus Waddington, Associate at Todd Architects, Clare McAllister, Senior Customer Relations Manager at Electric Ireland, and Kate Noble, Head of Energy and Environmental Practices at the National Trust and Laura Coey, Education Officer at Action Renewables.
On Wednesday 14 November 2012, six finalist teachers and their classes will be invited to take part in an all-expenses-paid fun Challenge Day at W5, an interactive discovery centre where they will meet Webster, Belfast Harbour's environmental guardian, enjoy an interactive 'Talking Rubbish' show and take part in a new team challenge for 2012 to create wind turbines.
As the day draws to a close, one teacher will not only be presented with the coveted Belfast Harbour Green Teacher of the Year title, but will also be provided with winning tickets for their class to the new Titanic Belfast visitor attraction and a large hamper for the teacher. Two runner ups will also receive special hampers, as well as W5 tickets for their classes. Goodie bags will also be given out to all pupils participating in the Challenge day.
Roy Adair, Belfast Harbour CEO, continued:
'The Green Teacher of the Year Award is now in its fourth year and is truly getting bigger and better each year. It is so inspiring to see our young leaders becoming more aware of important environmental issues and taking responsibility for their actions. We believe it is important to reward those who bring the benefits of looking after the environment to the forefront of education.'
Nicola Murphy, Business Development Manager, Action Renewables, said:
'The Green Teacher initiative is an exciting and creative way to get both pupils and teachers involved in local and wider green activities. Every year we are blown away by the originality of projects that schools participate in. This competition helps children to see that caring for our environment can be fun and rewarding.'
Last year's judging panel named Mr. Neil McAllister from Fairview Primary School, Ballyclare, as winner of the coveted gong, taking away the top prize of a hamper and tickets for his class to the Ulster Orchestra Christmas performance of 'The Snowman' at the Ulster Hall.
Any primary schoolchildren who think their teacher deserves the Green Teacher of the Year title should send their entry, which should consist of no more than 100 words, to 'Belfast Harbour Green Teacher of the Year 2012', Action Renewables, Boucher Business Studios, Block C, Unit 1, Glenmachan Place, Belfast, BT12 0PL or email email@example.com by 19 October to ensure their teacher doesn't miss out.