Kate Murray


Kate Murray is a Microsoft Expert Educator Fellow for the Republic of Ireland. She teaches in St. Augustine's National School Clontuskert. Clontuskert is a small, vibrant, rural school in the west of Ireland and is a Microsoft Showcase School. The students and teachers use film, podcasting and robotics throughout the school.

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School: St. Augustine's NS Clontuskert

Our Projects

Clontuskert Galway Ireland Week 1 Submission

St. Augustine's N.S. is a small rural school in Co. Galway in the west of Ireland. The school is the first primary Microsoft Showcase School in the Republic of Ireland.

This week the students of Clontuskert worked in teams to gather information, research and explore the theme of Cliamte Change. This was an exploratory week driven by the thoughts and ideas of the students. They used OneNote to collate their information and following brainstorming sessions decided how they would approach the filming process. Check out our film and let us know what you think by tweeting us on @clontuskertns



Clontuskert Galway Ireland Week 2 Submission

This week the students of Clontuskert are investigating how Climate Change affects us in Galway and Ireland. Students explored the following questions:

1. What are the causes and effects of climate change in Galway/Ireland?

2. What natural disasters have recently happened in Ireland that have been caused by climate change?

3. Have there been more severe weather events in the last century in Ireland/Galway?

4. Are there any initiatives in Ireland to help stop Climate Change?

Clontuskert Galway Ireland Week 3 Submission

Clontuskert's Week 3 Film was delayed due to the onslaught of Hurricane Ophelia. St. Augustine's was closed for Monday 16th and Tuesday 17th November. Thankfully all of our families stayed safe and there was no damage to houses or the school.
There was a Red Weather Warning in place countrywide. The hurricane hit the southern coast of Ireland with unfortunately three people losing their lives. The National Emergency Coordination Group met and gave advice to people to remain in their houses during the storm.
Climate Change means that scientists predict more of these weather events will hit Ireland in the future.
The students researched what happened during Ophelia, other storms that have hit Ireland and also what we can do to help stop climate change.
Find out more on http://www.climate-action.info/

Clontuskert Galway Ireland Week 4 Submission

Week 4 of our Climate Action Project consisted of preparation for and taking part in Skype Calls with schools in New Jersey and Dubai. We prepared by using our research over the previous three weeks of the project to collate topics to discuss with our partner schools.

Notes from the students of the Senior Room:

On Tuesday 24th October we Skyped New Jersey and the class of Michael Dunlea. Michael teaches seven and eight year olds in Tabernacle Elementary School in New Jersey. The students are learning Spanish. New Jersey was badly affected by Hurricane Sandy and four thousand houses were destroyed. In New Jersey after Sandy and because of the flood risk to houses people have to raise their houses by fifteen feet or else they won't get insured. The elderly and disabled people if they have a house like this they use an elevator to get up and down it costs lots of money to make the house higher and a lot to install the elevator.
They are studying Climate Change like our school. The school asked us some questions about what we are doing with the climate change project. After that we asked them some questions and what they do in their school. Their school is one of the best schools in their town because they are mindful of their water waste and reducing the waste of plastic.
It was 2:19pm in Clontuskert and 9:19am in New Jersey when we spoke to Mr. Dunlea's Class. That is a five hour time difference.
START is Stafford Teachers and Residents Together and this group was founded by Mr. Dunlea in response to the devastation of Hurricane Sandy. 


On Wednesday 25th October we skyped into GEMS School in Dubai with Mrs. Shafaque Riaz. GEMS is also a Microsoft Showcase School. Professor Anne Dolan from Mary Immaculate College in Limerick joined us for the call and was very impressed with the work of the students who had prepared so well for the call.

Notes from the students of the Senior Room:

People in Dubai speak Arabic.  Many of the parents work in the airport which is near GEMS School. They have more they four thousand pupils in their school. They have one hundred and five different nationalities. During our call to Dubai it was 37 degrees. They have a lot of traffic every day in Dubai.
When the students were researching for the Climate Action Project they found that they have had more sandstorms this summer and they predict they are going to have more rain in winter.
They have a Minster for Climate Change in Dubai like we do in Ireland.
They reuse water from the buses after they wash them.
School starts at 7:30 in the morning and ends at 4 o 'clock. There are testing flying cars and self - driving cars in Dubai. They are trying to put the right thing into the right bins. Every month they go to the beach to clean it.

The children were not in the classroom at the time so we did not get to meet them.
Mrs. Riaz showed us some photos of Dubai and she asked us questions about Ireland. We told her about Hurricane Ophelia and what we have been doing in Clontuskert to help stop climate change.
We told her about the bins and about the green school and what we do. There national sport is football.
We spoke to Mrs. Riaz for forty minutes.


Brainstorming during Climate Action Project in Clontuskert
Brainstorming during Climate Action Project in Clontuskert