About Green Schools
Green Schools helps local schools to deliver outdoor education sessions. The programme focusses on schools in areas of deprivation to ensure that all children have the chance to benefit from positive activities in nature.
Over October and November, the Green Team education officer, Margon, worked over 5 sessions with a class from St. David’s RC Primary School, with a focus on exploring local parks and green spaces. A partnership with the Sustrans ‘ibike’ team using active travel, made the project truly sustainable.
Session 1: The group walked to a local park, where they spotted ducks and swans, learned about the river, put on the wellies for some river-dipping to investigate which small creatures live in the water and got creative with some environmental art.
Session 2: Another walk to another local park. This time the group got stuck into litter picking and planting 200 daffodil bulbs. Data was collated during the litter pick and taken back into the class to calculate totals, averages and produce graphs. Pupils talked about litter during and after the session – where it comes from, how it affects wildlife and what can be done to reduce it.
“So much litter and this is just one park”
Session 3: On the third day the pupils played a game of cat and mouse (with a discussion on the predator / prey relationship in nature), set off on a nature-based scavenger hunt and made small homes for cuddly toy animals with pupils describing their home, what materials were used and how climate change might affect the homes and habits of animals.
Session 4: The Sustrans ‘I bike’ team were partners in this project and provided scooters for this session so the pupils could travel a little further to explore a local beach on a beautiful, sunny afternoon. Around 25% of the pupils had never seen the sea before. The pupils created beautiful pieces of environmental art on a sea theme – there were several mermaids, octopus, a shipwreck and some new sea creatures never seen before.
“I enjoyed scooting as it was fast and fun”
Session 5: The final session involved safe fire lighting and one last storytelling session (with the story of ‘how robin got his red breast’ following previous stories of ‘the biggest frog ever’ and ‘why bears hibernate’). The pupils reviewed their Green Schools experience over hot chocolate and toasted marshmallows.
Watch this great short video created by Sustrans Scotland about the project.
Over the course of the 5 sessions the pupils embraced every aspect of the project – active travel, conservation tasks and discussion of climate change and other issues. They each achieved their John Muir Discovery Awards and demonstrated a strong desire to continue to enjoy and protect their local greenspaces. A number of children have already taken their family to the greenspaces visited during the project and as a class they have agreed to return to see their daffodils in spring, make anti-litter posters and do regular litterpicks.
“Outdoor learning is now my favourite thing”
“I wish we could always do outdoor learning!”
To find out more about how your school can benefit from our expertise in outdoor learning, click here.