2016 – 2017
We start this year having achieved our second Eco Schools Green Flag at the end of the Summer Term – a very big well done to the Eco Bees who met with the inspector and the whole school for showing off how well we weave ecological issues into our school life. The inspector was very impressed with how knowledgeable the children in our school are about eco issues and she mentioned in particular how lovely it was to speak to a child during playtime who told her proudly that she had been involved in designing our outside apparatus area! This highlighted how we continue to develop and make the most of our school grounds.
To maintain our enthusiasm and momentum we have already identified key areas we would like to focus on this year. They include:
- Promoting walking to school – Year 6 will be gathering data throughout the year to measure our impact.
- Taking part in ‘Switch Off Fortnight’ – Year 5 are going to be organising how we will highlight this.
- Reducing waste in packed lunches – Year 4 will be working on this project and how they can promote this to the rest of the school.
- Developing a vegetable garden – Year 3 will be working on this project with our site manager Mr Fretwell.
- Key Stage One will be targeting litter in our school grounds.
We have elected a new team of Eco Bees who will be building on the success on last years team. Watch this space for up and coming projects.
2015 – 2016
As an Eco School, we achieved our Green Flag in March 2014, this award has to be reapplied for every two years and we will be reapplying for the Green Flag during 2016. At Buglawton Primary School we have two children from each class who focus on all Eco matters – they are called Eco Bees.
We meet regularly to discuss what our concerns and targets are as a school. We have an agenda generated by the pupils and minutes of our meetings. We are also very fortunate to have an Eco Governor, Mrs Teagle and two parent Eco Bees, Mrs Hunt and Mrs Diorazio. They bring a great deal to our fantastic team!
During the Autumn Term we had a ‘Water Week’. All classes focused the curriculum around water and we had two assemblies where we learnt about the struggles some children face around the world to access clean drinkable water. During our week every class did a ‘Water Walk’ so they could appreciate the distance some children have to walk to get clean water. Please look at our pictures below. We also had a day where we donated £1 to WaterAid and we all wore something blue. It was a really interesting week and we all loved our different activities. Watch the video below to see Year Six performing ‘I turn on the tap’:
SWITCH OFF FORTNIGHT – ENERGY
Also during the Autumn Term we took part in ‘Switch Off Fortnight’ we even had a day where we did not use electrical devices (not easy on a dark November day!). We ran a competition to design a poster promoting saving energy. We had over 120 entries and the Eco Bees had a tough job choosing a winner so we chose two from KS1 and two from KS2. Their designs have been minimised, laminated and are now displayed throughout school to remind us to ‘Switch Off”. Please see our winning designs below.
TIGERS – GLOBAL CITIZENSHIP
In January, Year 3 and the Eco club are getting the opportunity to take part in making an animated film for WWF to raise the profile of tigers (the animal we currently sponsor). Ric Leeson, who is an animator of shows like ‘The Clangers’ for Cbeebies, is coming in to make a film with our children. The film will be used by WWF to support their ‘Tigers Alive Initiative’ where they aim to double the numbers of tigers in the wild by 2022. We can’t wait to play our part in this film!
UPDATE! We have now been able to view our wonderful animated film promoting ‘redrawing’ tigers in the world. We are absolutely delighted with the film and feel that message is very clear. To celebrate we launched the film in a special ‘Tiger Assembly’ prepared by the Eco Club. They did a great job explaining why tigers are endangered and sharing lots of interesting facts. The assembly finished with our film and you could have heard a pin drop. As a school we are incredibly proud to see our hands and images in this animation – we hope is sends a clear message globally and that we can make a difference. You can view it by following the link below.
An area we are focusing on this year is ‘litter’ so we were up for the challenge of taking part in the nationwide campaign ‘Clean for the Queen’. This was a project to celebrate the Queen’s 90th Birthday. Even though we had a very rainy day it didn’t dampen our spirits or our commitment as a school to improve our school grounds and community with an epic litter pick. Wearing our crowns made from recycled materials we hit the streets – some parents even came along too to lend a hand. What a great community spirit we have! We saw a big improvement and we continue to see our litter improving in the school grounds with the support of our Eco Bees promoting putting litter in the bins by rewarding children with ‘Good to be Green’ stickers.
During our Summer Term we have been encouraging our children to get healthy and save the environment by walking to school. Firstly, we conducted a survey and found that 56% of our children come to school by car – this is 16% above the national average! Our Eco bees came up with some great ideas to promote walking that included wearing odd socks and pairing up with friends. On the Thursday of our ‘Walk to School’ week, Mr Norris met with children and parents at 8.15 to show a new route to school from Tommy’s Lane – we had a great turn out! Overall we feel the week was a great success and when we collected data at the end of the week we found that 42% of our children came by car – a big improvement but we feel we can still do better. The Eco Bees have arranged a poster competition where the winning poster will be blown up and displayed outside on our school gates – watch this space as we will be judging the winner on the first week back after half-term.
On Saturday the 14th May some of our pupils took part in a community planting session in Congleton Park. We were asked to plant up pots that will be displayed throughout Congleton city centre during the summer. We worked on numerous pots and can’t wait to see how they bloom over the next few months. It was great to get a chance to work with children from other Congleton primary schools and there was a great camaraderie – even Congleton’s Mayor turned up to help with planting. It was a great morning!
During our Eco Meeting in May our Eco Bee parent Mrs Hunt mentioned that it is School Grounds Week in June and came up with some wonderful suggestions about how we could celebrate and use our school grounds. As a school we are blessed with great school grounds and we regularly use our outside environment to enhance our learning. During the Spring Term all classes took part in a ‘Evidence of Spring investigation’. For example, Year 6 used our school grounds for den building, Year two focused on observing wildlife and Year 3 refreshed our bug hotels to make them even better. Following Mrs Hunt’s suggestions we shared ideas and Mrs Walsh spoke to staff who agreed it would be great to use our school grounds with a numeracy focus during this week. Watch this space to see how we used our environment in different ways in maths.
Earlier in this term we were fortunate to have a representative from Blue Cross come into our school to do a whole school assembly on reading the body language of pets. This was of great interest to us because of our own school pets, Nutmeg and Ginger. The children really enjoyed getting the opportunity to ask a specialist how we can best care for our much loved guinea pigs.
- As part of global citizenship, we were also really enthusiastic to take part in the 90kg Rice Challenge alongside other Congleton primary schools. The funds raised from the sale of 90kg of Fairtrade rice meant that a child from Malawi will be able to go to secondary school for a year. We raised nearly £100
- Our Eco Bees worked very hard making and decorating paper bags that held the rice, spices and recipes. WE SOLD OUT – and had to get extra bags! Thank you to all of our pupils and families that took part
- Recently Year 5 took part in a community litter pick alongside Havanah Primary School. We relish the opportunity to improve our community and work with other schools.
On Saturday 16th May some of our pupils took part in a planting session in Congleton Park for ‘Congleton in Bloom’. This is a community project where pupils from our local schools participate in planting flowers that we will all enjoy being displayed around our city centre throughout the summer. We were very proud to take part in this community project and meet our Mayor.
In our Summer term we had an Eco Day – all children were asked to wear green or come to school dressed as a bee. We had a great assembly where all of the Eco bees from each class did a presentation on an endangered animal of their choice. It had been suggested that we sponsor an endangered animal and the presentations were designed to help each child (and adult) decide which animal they thought was the most worthy cause. Everybody was given a counter and they placed it in the container of the animal they wanted is to sponsor. The winner was a…TIGER!
We also used this day to raise money for a very worthy cause ‘Mary’s Meals’. This is a charity who aim to give a child at least one meal a day in countries where they can not always eat everyday. Just £12.20 is enough money to feed one child for a year! We were delighted to raise £105.75.
What a fantastic end to a wonderful ‘Eco’ Year!