Sunday, April 14, 2013



This year our learning focus is "Making Connections" under theme of Globalisation.  
Our inquiry is about our connections to our own identity, other cultures and countries and the environment and the impact of these on us and the lives of others.

This year our Envirogroup want to track our progress by measuring change in the areas of waste, water and landscape.  Are we making a difference??

We also have the task of working towards achieving our next steps as were identified in our reflection from last year. 
To achieve our next steps;
1.  Every class has been assigned an area of responsibility that they will maintain and develop. 
2.  We will encourage everyone to bring a water bottle and litterfree lunchbox.  An Eco Agent is assigned to each class in the school to support them in this and to monitor their progress so that we can discover if we are making progress.
3.  Every assembly the Eco Agents present messages and give rewards for those students that are caught following our care code.
4.  Every newsletter has environment messages and information for our parents and community. 

Projects this year;

This year the Enviro group organised a schoolwide waste audit so that we could find out how much of our waste is recycled and how much has to go to the landfill.
On Wednesday every class collected their classroom waste and the Eco Agents gathered up all the worm food, compost and recyclable materials to weigh and count. 
First we sorted it into these categories, recyclables, compost, worm food, landfill.
Next we weighed it all and found out that we makd 15.6 kilograms of rubbish a day.  6.5 kgms of waste goes to the landfill, but the really good news is that we are recycling 9.1 kilograms of our waste. The Eco Agents go to the classes every week to show them how to sort their waste properly and to encourage everyone to bring a litterfree lunchbox and a drink bottle.  


This year we have continued to recycle our paper and cardboard using Paper 4 Trees scheme.  Every classroom has a green bin for all their classroom recycling.

The Envirogroup have been learning about how Maori used the native bush to make  medicines before there were chemist shops.  We read a book "Koro's Medicine" and then we started to research to find native trees that Maori use to make medicines to help them when they are sick.  We want to make a rongoa garden down on our back field when we begin planting in July.

On a very windy, cold Thursday 7 June the year 4 students helped plant native trees on the Elm Park Reserve next to our school.  The Council provided the trees and spades and we put in a lot of trees during the 2 hours of planting.  After we finished we got a bottle of water and an apple.  It was muddy and fun!

On this exciting day the 24th of May we were to officially recieve the sign that says we are a Silver Enviroschool.  We welcomed our visitors into the auditorium with a powhiri.  We listened to speeches about the work we have accomplished and how we have taken action to make our school more sustainable.  Mrs Jessep, Mr Finn and Mrs Warren presented the sign to Mrs Plowright and the Head boy and the Head Girl spoke on behalf of all of us.  We cheered when we saw the big sign.  Afterwards we had morning tea and took our guests on a tour of some of the projects we have worked on.  It was an exciting day and everyone was happy.


Everyone in our school is involved in working towards our whole school vision, projects on our vision map and designing our school care code.    

This year, as a result of our whole school inquiry about water, a range of actions have been explored and employed by students to conserve water and improve the quality of our waterways.  Students have included their families and encouraged and educated them through home water audits, 4 minute showers and adjusting the flush on toilets, beach clean ups and stream trips.    
With a deeper knowledge of our impact on the wider environment students have changed some of our practices and introduced more sustainable systems for our environment -
e.g. washing yoghurt pots in buckets not storm water drains
Collecting wastewater from the drinking fountains to use on gardens
Stream clean up team (Eco Warriors)

As a result of audits and monitoring in our school, students can see the progress we are making, have identified problems and initiated changes to address these.  Practices and projects begun in previous years have been continued, refined and developed to become more efficient and involve more people. Some of these are
Native tree Planting
Worm Farm
Weekly audits of litterfree lunches
Recycling paper and other waste
Shade house
All the guiding principles inform our learning and practices.  We have strengthened the Maori Perspectives guiding principle by gathering information about Maori world view, the language and their traditional practices around water and the environment.   The whole school visited our mountain, river and sea to make connection with places in our school pepeha and connect to our role as kaitiaki.  Our Maori enrichment students have become an expert resource in each class and introduced Matariki for us.  

We are a diverse school with many cultures, languages and perspectives and all of these bring a richness to our conversations and action planning.  At the end of the year we celebrate with our cultural concert.

Our next steps are to create an awa to record our journey as an enviroschool.
We will continue the native planting and developing this area to include a pathway and information about our trees.
Encourage everyone to bring water bottles to school.
Maintain and develop the exisiting areas 
e.g. Michael Ungerer garden
Sensory garden
Vegetable gardens
Shade house plants
Lizard gardens
Share information with our community
e.g lessons on compost and worm farming
Information signs
Movies and Blogs
In July we began the second stage of our tree planting plan. Everyone in our school helped plant the trees including teachers and parents.  Over the last month lots of us have been mulching around the trees to kill the grass and help keep the moisture in the ground as Summer approaches.

We have planted a selection of native trees to attract more birds and insects into our school grounds.  We have also planted a manuka tree tent, a rongoa section (Maori medicine), and a lot of harakeke so that in the future we have flax for weaving.



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