Eco News from St Mary’s
Meet our new eco committee
Year 1 - Oscar and Violet
Year 2 - Ottie and Jack
Year 3 - Logan and Evie
Year 4 - Penny and Stirling
We have an energetic new eco committee and we have been meeting to talk about what they would like to do to make our school greener.
They are going to reintroduce our bug box to encourage children to study wildlife in our grounds, monitor how much energy we use each week and encourage everyone to reduce the amount we use. They are going to lead a litter project and we have talked about creating a mini pond in the spring.
We have 2 new compost bins with easy lift up lids. Violet and Emily are our current compost wardens to encourage us to put the right waste in the right bin.
We have many prickly visitors in the grounds of our school, so we have 2 new hedgehog homes tucked away in quiet places in the grounds to house them when it gets cold.
Kirsten Juniper came to visit from the Waste Partnership and talked to us about waste and recycling, we learned about what can be reused and recycled.
The children hunted for bugs and learned about renewable energy.
The school also collaborated to create a huge mural of an eye ahead of the Cop 26 summit in November as part of CAFOD’s ‘eyes of the world’ initiative, to remind the world leaders that we were watching them and encouraging them to agree measures to tackle climate change for the future of our planet.
Our year group eco bugs have gone up around our classrooms to remind us how to be more eco-friendly every day, by recycling, keeping our pen lids on, turning off the lights when we leave the classroom and using less hand towels - in key stage 1 we learned to say “will one or two do?”
We have just signed up to be a Sustainable Palm Oil Champion. We hope to become part of the first Sustainable Palm Oil County, helping to protect the rainforest and the wildlife that live there, but also supporting small farmers who produce palm oil sustainably.
Palm oil is in so many products we buy, but many companies are now signing up to only use sustainable palm oil. ‘Food Links’, our lunch provider, has signed up and we will only buy food products that contain sustainable palm oil in school from now on.
Many companies are joining the sustainable palm oil community. Tesco and Aldi have signed up, so all their own brand products contain sustainable palm oil and many other companies have signed up too.
Below is a document which lists products that use sustainable palm oil.
St Mary’s is a Green Flag Award holder!
St Mary's is the proud holder of the Green Flag Eco Award. We first achieved this Award in 2016, were reviewed again in 2019 and as current holders have many eco activities happening at St Mary's
This prestigious award is given to schools who have proved a commitment to environmental issues and embedded green ideals within the curriculum and the life of the school.
Eco-School Autumn 2020-February 2021
We have been keeping busy with our eco activities this year so far.
In the Autumn term we started our daily 'Walk to School' registers in class and the 'Bike it Bear' was making an appearance once a week, but instead of the children getting to take 'Bike it Bear' home for the weekend, they received a 'keep bright' prize instead.
We voted for new eco committee members in our classes, a brand new set of eco warriors! We have already started to think of ideas for our action plan for the year.
We had an eco competition - to design each year group's chosen bug, which lots of you entered. A winner from each year group was chosen by members of our new eco committee. Well done to the winners!
The winners were:
Reception - Oscar
Year 1 - Will
Year 2 - Neve
Year 3 - Parshwa
Year 4 - Jack
Our class bugs will be reminding us to 'think wisely' in our classrooms and to reduce, reuse and recycle.
The eco club worked very hard last year to establish a new bug hotel area in our grounds and they designed new labels for our regular and compost bins. The signs are now much clearer for our children to see and to put the right things in the right bins.
'Wellbeing Wednesday' was a chance to stop and think about our environment. In Year 1 we made wormeries and fat balls for wild birds. We refilled the bird feeders and hung some fat balls outside our classroom, as we hope to entice some wildlife there as well.
Our Class Eco-Bugs
Here are our Class Eco-Bugs drawn by our pupils
Reception Class' Ladybird Eco-bug
Year 2's Caterpillar Eco-bug
Year 3's Butterfly Eco-bug
Year 4's Dragonfly Eco-bug
Week 20th-24th January 2020
Today we met at Eco Club for the first time. We learned how to make fat balls for our empty bird feeder. It is very easy. Here's the recipe if you want to make it at home.
Cut a block of lard into 4
Place one quarter of the block in a mixing bowl.
Next, mix in a small handful of oats, chopped apple and dried fruit and add a large handful of bird seed.
Then squish it together and shape it into a ball.
Hey presto a lovely seed ball!
We filled up the bird feeders and watched to see if any birds were interested. We saw a beautiful robin, who came to eat a nice bird treat!
Our new bug hotels and signs
Week 27th-31st January 2020
In Eco Club we went bug hunting and found a lot of worms! We could see that some birds had been eating our fat balls and we started to think about new signs for our compost bins and came up with some ideas for the designs.
Week 3rd-7th February 2020
The eco club made bug hotels this week using bamboo and pine cones!
Year 2 won the class eco award and Emily Dunlop (Year 4) got to take Bike it Bear home for the weekend.
Week 10th-14th February 2020
This week we have been making signs for our new bug hotel area in the school grounds. The children decided what they wanted on the signs and we shall finish them after half term. We think they look great!
This week's Bike it Bear winner was Samuel
Bug hotels made from bamboo & pine cones
Week 25th-28th February 2020
In eco club this week we were finishing off our bug hotel signs. We added a couple of smaller bug hotels and decided where the signs should go when the paint is dry and they are sealed.
We think they look really good!
Signs for our new bug hotels
Week 2nd-6th March 2020
At eco club this week we were learning about worms and how to make a wormery. We made 2! The worms look right at home.
On Friday we had an amazing turn out for the bike it breakfast and lots of children and parents cycled and biked to school. We were blessed with fine, sunny weather. A massive thank you to Sharon Conway and the fantastic PTA who helped to set this up and provided a scrummy continental breakfast!