ECO-SCHOOLS

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"Let us be good stewards of the Earth we inherited.

All of us have to share the Earth’s fragile ecosystems and precious resources, and each of us has a role to play in preserving them.

If we are to go on living together on this Earth, we must all be responsible for it." (Kofi Annan)

Dear parents, carers, children and other interested parties,

At Clavering Primary School, we believe that children who are connected to the natural world will positively shape the future which is why we are an ‘Eco-School’. ‘Eco-Schools’ is an international award programme that assists schools on their sustainable journey, helping to make sustainability an integral part of school life.

We are proud that Clavering pupils embrace the opportunity to learn outdoors, be adventurous in wild spaces and work hard as active conservationists. After all, if children are not connected to the environment, how will they learn about, understand and take care of it?

This section of our website has been created to celebrate and showcase some of the work that we do within the Eco-Schools framework.

Best wishes, 

Mrs Weightman                    Mr N. C. McAvoy

Eco-Schools Leader                                 Deputy Headteacher 

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"Look deep into nature and then you will understand everything better." (Albert Einstein)

 

GREEN FLAG AWARD

Did you know that we have been awarded the Eco-Schools 'Green Flag' for the quality of our work across the school?

This is an internationally-recognised award, assessed by the Eco-Schools team at Keep Britain Tidy.

 

 

This photograph shows members of our 2016-2017 Eco Committee in our Wildlife Area with Mrs Weightman and our Green Flag!

 

 

Did you know that two aspects of our Eco-Schools work (our Fairtrade initiatives and our John Muir Programme) have been shortlisted for 'Pride of Hartlepool' Awards? 

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CLAVERING ECO CODE

The 'Clavering Eco Code' was written by our Eco Committee and was shared with all of our pupils in a whole-school assembly.

The 'Clavering Eco Code' is displayed in every classroom and in other prominent areas of the school in the hope that it is followed by every member of the Clavering Family every day!

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CLAVERING ECO COMMITTEE

Although we are committed to ensuring that every member of the Clavering Family is an active conservationist, it is the members of our Clavering Eco Commitee who lead our Eco-Schools work across the school.

 

The 2017-2018 democratically elected members of our Clavering Eco Committee are:

Charlie W (6GW), Jessica G (6RT), Oliver D (5AM), Aaron N (5KS), Dylan I'A (4LJ), Jessica L (4LH),

Imogen B (3LS), Jack O (3LS), Harrison S (2JT), Heidi T (2SW), Oliver H (1FC) and Nate C (1LD).

 

The rest of this webpage details some of the work that we do within each aspect of the Eco-Schools framework.

This work is also shared on our 'Go for Green!' Eco-Schools display board in our central corridor.

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BIODIVERSITY

We have an established Outdoor Learning Zone consisting of a pond area, wildlife garden, outdoor learning tables, green house and chicken area. We also have a large field area and an orchard. Every part of our Outdoor Learning Zone is home to an amazing abundance of plants and animals! 

 

The maintenance of our Outdoor Learning Zone falls under the responsibility of the Gardening Club; however, the whole school is involved in taking responsibility for these areas when they use them.

 

Our Outdoor Learning Zone is home to a variety of plants and animals, including our resident hedgehogs, amphibians and chickens.

 

Aspects of our biodiversity work are carried out in collaboration with a number of local and national organisations:

 

Our Eco Committee has taken the lead on our participation in the British Trust for Ornithology’s ‘What’s Under Your Feet?’ action research project.

 

Biodiversity is studied in various science topics across the school: animals in the autumn term in Years 1, 2, 3 and 4; living things and their habitats in Years 2, 3 and 4 in the autumn term; plants in Years 1, 2 and 3 in the summer term; and all of this is revised and extended in Year 6.

 

Children in Year 2 develop their knowledge and understanding about biodiversity during their trip in the Wynyard Woods with the West View Project.

 

Children in Year 4 complete a biodiversity field study workshop with experts from Teesmouth Field Centre as part of one of their biology units.

 

Children in Reception develop their knowledge and understanding of biodiversity during their time in the Wynyard Woods and the various activities they complete in their Early Years grounds. 

 

Participants in our John Muir Award Programme have the opportunity to extend and develop their knowledge and understanding of biodiversity. 

SCHOOL GROUNDS

Our Gardening Club takes the lead in developing and maintaining our flowerbeds around the school grounds. They complete different gardening tasks: weeding, planting, building habitats, making bird feeders, etc.

 

Our Eco Committee continues to take the lead in developing our school grounds. For example, they have built a mini-beast hotel and established areas for our resident hedgehogs to hibernate in.

 

Children in our Early Years Foundation Stage take responsibility for maintaining their own garden area, including growing vegetables.

 

Our Gardening Club successfully grows vegetables and tomatoes which are used in Design & Technology projects and are sold (with profits being invested back into the school grounds).

 

Our school pond (maintained by the Gardening Club and Eco Committee) is a very popular part of our school grounds and is used in a variety of subject areas, including science, art and English. Children have spotted a variety of amphibians: toads, frogs and newts!

 

Our school wildlife area is a haven for a variety of different animals. Children in various year groups love to go on wildlife hunts; our most popular mammal is our resident hedgehog!

 

Our school orchard continues to develop each year, producing a variety of fruit: apples, pears and plums.

 

Our gardening endeavours are being enhanced by our involvement in the Royal Horticultural Society’s ‘Campaign for School Gardening’ which inspires and supports schools to provide children with gardening opportunities to enhance their skills and boost their development.

WATER

All children and staff members are encouraged to not leave taps running or use excessive amounts of water when washing hands, equipment, etc. Our Eco Committee monitors taps around the school to ensure that there aren’t any parts of the school where taps are being left on. 

 

The Gardening Club has installed two water butts to recycle rain water which is then used in our Outdoor Learning Zone.

 

Our Eco Committee monitor any leaks around the school, reporting them to the school’s onsite supervisor, Mr Bainbridge, who addresses the problems immediately and feeds back to the Eco Committee.

 

Children in Year 4 learn about the importance of not wasting water and how to save water. They write various different texts linked to conserving water.

 

Our Year 4 Eco Schools ‘Water’ topic is linked with the charity ‘Water Aid’.

 

Children in Year 4 learn about the water cycle; this work is extended and developed in Year 6.

 

In March, we will be supporting ‘World Water Day’.

LITTER AND WASTE

The Eco Committee and Gardening Club members monitor litter on the school grounds, in particular on the perimeter of the school linked to any passers-by dropping litter.

 

All children and staff members are encouraged to not drop litter. Additional bins have been implemented on the school playgrounds and all classrooms have litter bins and recycling bins.

 

Our work to tackle litter is supported by a range of national organisations and initiatives:

 

In Year 3, there is a specific Eco-Schools topic linked to litter, waste and recycling which includes the children investigating their own recycling habits and writing a persuasive letter to the local council about a litter-themed issue.

 

The Eco Committee runs our popular ‘Uniform Exchange’ to re-use items of school uniform.

ENERGY

The Eco Committee takes the lead on addressing and monitoring any energy-related issues in school; however, the whole school is involved in taking responsibility for minimising energy waste. All children and staff members are encouraged to switch off energy appliances (e.g. computers) and lights.

 

When we have any new building work completed, we urge the planners to include energy-efficient lights that automatically switch off.

 

We always participate in The Pod’s ‘Switch Off Fortnight’ campaign.

 

In Year 5, there is a specific Eco Schools topic linked to energy. The children learn about renewable and non-renewable energy resources, how to lower energy emissions and how to save energy at home. The children complete an investigation into how to make the school more energy efficient with findings reported to the headteacher.

 

Due to our actions, our energy use has reduced and we now fall in the D banding of energy performance operational rating at 82kwh; this is below the typical rating of 100kwh.

TRANSPORT

We are part of the ‘Walk to School’ scheme where children are encouraged to walk or part-walk to school at least once a week. This is overseen by our Eco Committee. Our daily monitoring ‘Walk to School’ charts have helped us to prove the fact that there has been an increase in the amount of children who choose to walk to school.

 

We have a bike and scooter shed to encourage children to cycle or scoot to school. 

 

Every year, children participate in pedestrian training and cycling training to ensure that the environmentally-friendly transport methods that we promote can be carried out safely by our children.

 

The Eco Committee (along with Mr Iain Wright MP) attended a big ‘Walk to School’ celebration in Newcastle where they learnt about the benefits of walking both for healthy living and for the environment.

HEALTHY LIVING

We promote healthy food choices through various topics (particularly, D&T and science) and our involvement in the Key Stage 1 free fruit scheme, healthy snacks in the EYFS and healthy lunch choices.

 

During lessons, children have access to fresh drinking water, windows can be opened for ventilation and active learning helps to avoid children being sedentary for too long.  

 

Children learn about physical and mental health in our science curriculum and understand that there are many benefits from being involved in physical activity.

 

We offer a rich variety of extra-curricular activities linked to healthy living and regularly represent Hartlepool as town champions at Tees Valley Sport Finals. 

 

All pupils study two hours of PE every week and we are delighted to hold the GOLD standard of the ‘School Games Award’ and the GOLD standard of the ‘Youth Sport Trust Kitemark’ which recognises the school as a beacon of sporting excellence.  

 

We annually retain the GOLD standard of both the ‘School Games Award’ and the ‘Youth Sport Trust Kitemark’; the first year we achieved GOLD, Mr Iain Wright MP joined us for a special GOLD Healthy Living, PE and Sport Celebration Event. 

 

The success of our work to promote healthy living, PE and school sport has resulted in us sharing our practice and writing case studies for a variety of local and national organisations; in addition, Mr McAvoy has been recruited by the YST to volunteer as a Headteacher Ambassador. 

 

We are proud to hold ‘Healthy School’ status. 

GLOBAL CITIZENSHIP, INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL AWARD AND FAIRTRADE

The aim of our international learning activities is in line with our vision of equipping our children for life in a global society and work in a global economy. Our ‘global citizenship’ work is an opportunity to extend our pupils’ views of the world and help them to explore their perceptions. We also appreciate that our ‘global citizenship’ work helps our pupils to recognise connections and interdependencies and to think critically about different cultural, economic and political perspectives.

 

We are very proud that we have twice been awarded the Full International School Award by the British Council for our outstanding achievements in developing and embedding global citizenship within our curriculum. We were first awarded the Full International School Award in 2012 and renewed our status in 2015. The British Council praised us for our ‘creative and very imaginative international activities’ and how our ‘international collaborative projects were clearly defined in terms of aims and achieving outstanding outcomes’.

 

As part of our ‘global citizenship’ work, we have completed a variety of collaborative projects with schools from around the world. One of our best eco-linked projects was with a school in Kenya that focused on the school grounds and growing tomatoes. 

 

One of our most significant ‘global citizenship’ projects is our Fairtrade work. As well as a specific Fairtrade topic in Year 6, all Clavering children are involved in learning about, promoting and taking action for Fairtrade. We are proud to hold ‘FairAchiever’ status from the Fairtrade Foundation which is the highest level of the Fairtrade Schools award scheme.

 

As well as promoting Fairtrade within school, we also play an active role in the town-wide Hartlepool Fairtrade Steering Group, including mentoring schools that are beginning their Fairtrade journey.

CONSERVATION

At Clavering Primary School, we believe that it is not enough for us to be in sympathy with the plight of the natural world, but that we must become ‘active conservationists’. Children and staff members are actively encouraged to protect the environment. This includes our school grounds, our homes, our wider community and the various ‘wild spaces’ that we encounter as part of the Clavering curriculum (e.g. the Wynyard Woods) and extra-curricular activities (e.g. the North York Moors). 

 

Children in Year 6 have the opportunity to gain the John Muir Award which is an environmental award scheme focused on wild places. It encourages people to connect with, enjoy and care for the natural environment in a spirit of fun and adventure. 

 

In 2012, we were incredibly proud to be awarded 'John Muir Award Provider Status' by the John Muir Trust. This is a significant accolade for a primary school and is a wonderful reflection on the quality of our John Muir Award Programme. 

 

John Muir might seem like a distant historical figure to some, but his message – that we all need to experience, enjoy and care for wild places – is as relevant today as it ever was.  

"Contact with the natural world isn't a luxury; it is actually a necessity for all of us. All we know about the natural world gives us pleasure, delight, expertise, continuous interest throughout the year - joy on many occasions and solace on sad ones. Knowing about the natural world and being in contact with the natural world is the most precious inheritance that human beings can have." (Sir David Attenborough)