The staff and pupils of Christ Church School are striving to make a difference to the environment! We are members of the "Eco-Schools Award Programme" and are currently working towards our Bronze award.
The Eco-Schools programme is focused on nine key topics. These are:
- School grounds
- Healthy living
- Global citizenship
Environmental issues form part of the curriculum covered in each year group including pollution, the greenhouse effect, conservation, the rain forest and habitats of animals.
As a school we are working hard at recycling paper, cardboard, plastic and tins. We are monitoring our food waste from lunchtimes and are working with our chefs on the school menu so that we can try and reduce food waste.
Our Eco Warriors are active within school, working on the school planting and encouraging others to look after our lovely school environment and landscape.
Children are encouraged to walk, cycle or scoot to school and to register how they have got to school on our WOW (Walk to School) tool - see link to our launch in September
Thursday 18th May was national Outdoor Classroom Day! Some of us enjoyed the use of our new school garden, focusing on the different senses- smelling, touching and observing the changes that have taken place. We even had the opportunity to taste some juicy lettuces! Others have been on a scavenger hunt, encouraging us to get creative with nature and think about the variety and different uses of the plants around us.
There was once a garden at Christchurch, a wonderful garden, in front of the wall painted with tigers and birds where a pirate ship now stands. A bigger school was needed so in 2015 diggers came, and the garden went.
But, the garden was remembered. The children missed picking red ripe raspberries and sweet new carrots, seeing pumpkins swell, beans climbing high above their heads and beautiful butterflies pause to sip nectar from the flowers.
The bigger school meant more children and more reasons to grow. 3 abandoned raised beds, raised their abandoned heads and said “Use us! Fill us with soil, plant seeds, and together we can grow!”
Excited, the children worked hard to fill the beds with new soil and plants. They learned how a tiny seed has all the knowledge inside it to grow a plant and more importantly, food!
They saw different seeds make different plants. They tasted chives and nasturtiums, herbs and spinach. They had questions:
"Can you eat flowers?”
"Why do some plants grow better than others?"
"What are those black flys?"
"What will this seed make?"
Growing food takes a lot of learning and patience. The children were fascinated as pests came and plants went, tomatoes ripened, and rainbow chard sprouted vibrantly from the soil.
Teachers, parents and of course, wonderful children are coming together to plan and plant, nurture and grow this garden. Each class has plants to nurture, growing a new kitchen garden filled with carrots and strawberries, beetroot and cress, potatoes and lettuce, spinach and a spiral of sweet smelling herbs.
Wildflowers will flourish in the beds created by the builders, where beautiful butterflies can pause to sip nectar.
Growing gives us the opportunity to learn outside with a whole school community working together to make something beautiful, educational and edible! The garden is back to stay.