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Marlow Church of England Infant School

Eco School

Environment and Climate Emergency Declaration

The Eco Warriors at Marlow C of E Infant School have asked the Governors to declare an environment and climate emergency on their behalf. The Eco Warriors and the rest of the children are concerned about the planet and in line with the schools mission to be good citizens of the planet they want to share in the responsibility of making a difference to the Earth and its future.

As a Green Flag school, we have undertaken to find any means we can to learn how to save the planet and take action accordingly. We will do this by:

  • Looking for different ways to save, recycle and reuse the Earth’s precious resources
  • Being courageous advocates for the preservation of the environment and particularly habitats
  • Finding alternative ways to save energy

The children will work with school staff, parents and members of the local community to ensure the respect we believe the planet deserves, is shown by all.

As part of our school vision we aim to:

be good citizens of the planet

Eco Warriors

The Eco Warriors are made up of two elected representatives from each of the four KS1 classes. They meet  regularly each term to decide on the topics they wish the school to focus on. They have developed the following Eco Code

The Eco Warriors have spearheaded several campaigns within the school over the last 2 years to promote the need to protect the planet. Here are just a few:

  • They have held Waste Weeks, where the focus has been reducing the amount of packaging in lunch boxes and food waste from the hot lunches and as a result, the amount of waste was halved.
  • The school milk used to be delivered in individual cartons with plastic straws, the Eco Warriors approached the suppliers and as a result of their request, the milk is now delivered in glass bottles which are reused daily.
  • They have held battery recycling drives
  • We now back our display boards with fabric that can be reused over and over rather than with paper which is used once and then thrown away.
  • We are working to reduce the use of laminating and using cardboard or reusable plastic pockets to protect work that needs to be durable.

As a school, we are committed to working on the UN Sustainable Development Goals and details of this can be found  here

Outdoor Learning

We are lucky to have a large amount of outdoor space at our school and over the past few years, a group of dedicated parents have worked very hard to improve and enhance this space to provide varied habitats and great opportunities for learning outside. We try to spend as much time as we can learning outside the classroom and each year group has a dedicated day each week when most, if not all, of their learning, happens outside. 

  • Muddy Monday for Year 2
  • Welly Wednesday for Reception
  • Forest Friday for Year 1

Each class in school has access to a covered outdoor area which is used as an extension to the classroom with children able to access resources outside as well as inside for many lessons. In addition, we have several covered outdoor areas which can be used for learning: the Barn which has light and power; the Canopy which has seating for a class and a firepit and the Cocoon which is a covered gazebo.

Read more about Outdoor Learning at our school  here

Wild World

There has been a Wild World at Marlow C of E Infant School for many years but it had been neglected and underused so it wasn't safe nor very pretty to look at. Over the past few years, a group of dedicated parents has helped us regenerate this area of our school. 

We wanted to provide an environment that the children could use and enjoy for their learning and also one that created habitats for wildlife and minibeasts.

The theme of the 'Wild World' has changed and the focus is now on different areas which are named after the classes in the school. The idea for each class' area was developed with the children and giving an area to each class encourages ownership.  All of the children in school, over the last 12 months, have had the chance to be involved in the planting of different areas.  The 'Wild World' team have worked on creating an environment that focuses on sustainability and biodiversity and they have created a peaceful haven for all.

The areas include:

  • Dragonfly ponds ( A series of reused sinks with water-loving plants)
  • Grasshopper Meadow (which is linked to the Eco Schools BLUE Campaign  - Rewilding Britain school by school)
  • Butterfly Garden (Tyres in the shape of Butterfly wings with planting to encourage Butterflies)
  • Ladybird Bug Hotel (Reused materials stacked to encourage over -wintering bugs)
  • Ant Hill (Interactive area with microhabitats for minibeasts).
  • Bee Hive  (not real but with planting to encourage bees)

The regeneration of the Wild World has formed part of the whole school development plan to which involves improving, and learning about, our outside environment. We are very proud and thankful for what has been created. It is now a space which  encourages outdoor learning across the curriculum for example in art (sketching), English (observing plants and developing vocabulary banks for use in their story writing -adverbs and adjectives), science (observing and recording types of minibeasts),  maths ( counting - tallies).

 

Additional learning from the 'Wild World' comes in the form of learning about our school values, specifically respect and thankfulness -respect and thankfulness for creation and wildlife

Wildlife Corridor

In addition to the Wild World, and in line with the BLUE campaign, we have set aside a wildlife corridor around the edge of our school field. This tract of land has been planted with native fruit trees and hedging and the grass is left uncut, except in winter. As the trees and hedging mature, they will provide cover and food for a number of species and the grass provides cover for small mammals and a habitat for a number of native insects. 

We look forward to seeing what species use the wildlife corridor over the coming years. 

Walk to School

We encourage all our school families to not use their cars when travelling to and from school. We use the Walk once a Week travel tracker to record our journeys to school and walk, scoot or cycle whenever we can. Each child who walks at least three times each week receives a badge at the end of the month.

To teach the children to travel safely to school we have run Scootability sessions for all children and Footsteps training for children in Year 2. 

Global Citizenship

United Society Partners in the Gospel (USPG)  have recently signed a memorandum of understanding with the Church of South India (CSI) to undertake a School Twinning Initiative to be a school based mutually beneficial environmental education programme.
The Diocese of Oxford is taking part in a 2 year pilot programme with 9 schools and we are very excited to announce that our school has been chosen as one of those 9 due to the environmental work we have done.
We have been twinned with CMS LPS Urakam school in Kerala and we will begin sharing ideas about environmental conservation with them. We will keep parents updated regularly as the project progresses.

Tidy Up Team

The Tidy Up Team are a very keen group of Year 2 children who spend one lunchtime each week picking up litter in our school grounds or the streets nearby to our school.  We also educate all our children not to drop litter in line with our school value of respect.