Amine Timouni, Ned Newman, Nora O’Reilly, Tilly Kidd, Freya Ledwith, Rosie Graham.

Multy’s young poultry ‘eggsperts’

The boys and girls in first class at St Cremin’s in Multyfarnham have become poultry “eggsperts” over recent weeks following the arrival of some new feathered members of school community.

On February 9, the class welcomed the delivery of 20 eggs in an incubator from entrepreneurial student Matthew Glennon from St Finian’s College, who turned his out-of-school side hustle selling chicks on Done Deal into a TY project.

For three weeks, the boys and girls waited patiently for the chicks to start hatching and when the first one arrive on February 29, “eggcitement” was at fever pitch, teacher Veronica Daly told the Westmeath Examiner.

“We have been watching the chickens in the incubator. We have studied the growth of the chicks over the three-week cycle.

“From an educational point of view, it has been fantastic. It’s part of the Living Things strand on the science curriculum. They have learned how to care for animals and when we changed their beds, we put the organic sawdust in our polytunnel to grow our carrots and onions.”

The children have become so fond of their new classmates that Ms Daly is going to hold a “chicken lotto” to see who will get to take a few home.

“They have to go in twos and threes because they need a heat plate or an infrared lamp and the whole chicken set-up.”

The project, which was sponsored by John and Maria O’Reilly from Strikebox Engineering, whose daughter Nora is a member of the class, has been hugely rewarding for the students.

It’s great because we got to integrate into all the subjects. In PE we did the Birdie Song, we did art, we brought it into Irish, we did writing on it and the children also drew pictures. They loved it and the other classes came down to see it, so it was social as well.

“It is easy and so educational. John Glennon is phenomenal. He is just so enterprising. It has been fantastic. John supplied the incubator, the box, the electric hen, the eggs, we are feeding them porridge. The eggs that they came out of we grind them up and put them into the porridge so the chickens will be eating it for protein.

“They are mad to finish the work so that they can go up to them and they love to hear them chirping away. It’s a win-win. They love it.”