Eco Schools Ten Sustainable Topics are embedded into the broad and rich curriculum at Richard Avenue Primary School. We are very proud to have achieved our fourth Eco-School Green Flag renewal. We have developed current and interesting provision for our children to develop their knowledge and understanding of sustainable themes affecting us all.
- We Developed a bee friendly environment in the Friendship Garden, planting lavender to encourage bees to use our school grounds to collect pollen.
- Continuing to develop our Wildlife Garden to encourage wildlife to flourish by building a second Bug hotel and by planting more wildlife plants.
- Set up a Birdbox with a camera inside so we are able to watch the birth cycle of birds up until they’ve fledged. We used twitter which we regularly updated with photos and videos as they developed.
- In school we strive to ‘switch off’. Every night we make sure computers and lights are turned off thus ensuring we use less electricity.
- Becoming global citizens by being examples ourselves of how to act in a responsible, sustainable manner.
- The school held a Fairtrade week. It started had a whole school assembly about Fairtrade and then each year group carried out research into why Fairtrade is important and why we should be supporting it. This included poster making encouraging people to buy Fairtrade, discussions on the subject, and a display board we have up in school.
- Grow a variety of fruit and vegetables in our allotment in order for our children to gain an understanding of living in a self sufficient way.
- We held a sale of our vegetables from the school allotment. There was no set price, instead we asked for a donation towards our school.
- Ethos of- pick it up! Rubbish can blow into our school. We ensure we all do our bit to clean up.
- Our whole school focused on plastic pollution in our oceans. We have learned how harmful and significant this is to our marine life.
- Gardening and Art club working together in partnership with Sunderland City council to design two large plant pots to be displayed in Sunderland City centre. The children designed a Sustainable theme to highlight the importance of reducing plastic waste entering our oceans to help save our seas and marine life.
- Our Friendship Garden was designed by the children of RAPS in memory of a pupil from Richard Avenue. The children use this space for quiet, time and an area for reflection.
- The Outdoor classroom displays our Eco board and Eco team members. An outdoor learning environment for classes to use to enhance sustainable learning.
- Our Wildlife Garden is an area of our school allowed to ‘grow with nature’ and allow nature to take its course. Great for reading stories about the natural world in a natural environment. The children are keen to encourage nature into this area too.
- The Wildflower Meadow was designed and created by children in Year 4, with help from volunteers. This space reflects the popular theme of giving nature a home and providing a wide range of plants to offer diversity for our wildlife, especially bees!
- Allotment, Well maintained beds that grow a range of fruit and vegetables in spring and summer term. Autumn term the focus for our children is to re-nourish the beds.
- The Main Yard contains large pots designed by our children are on our main school yard. Sunderland City council have worked in partnership with RAPS and Sunderland in bloom and showcased these pots in the City centre for the past two years.
- Learning how to walk safely around roads, giving pupils the option to walk to school while explaining to them the advantage of doing so on an environmental level.
- Learning about and encouraging the use of public transport and car pooling in order to reduce carbon emissions from vehicles.
- We are focusing on recycling this year. The children were asked over the summer holidays to begin researching the issues around recycling and the impact it can have on our planet in preparation for their learning in class. This recycling project will run throughout the whole school year. In class children took part in Recycle Week 2019, learning about recycling with a strong focus this half term on plastic pollution. To make this interative we are encouraging parents and children to show their recycling habits using the hashtag #RAPSrecycling on Twitter.
- We have a water butt system placed in the Friendship Garden to collect rain water in order to use on our allotment and on plants around school.
Lost Landscapes and Learning
This project seeks to engage local school children and communities with their natural, industrial and social heritage. The school will be working with OASES, CEED and Durham Wildlife Trust and local people to enable them to understand the forces that have shaped our local landscape. A primary focus will be the decline of wildflower species within the locality. Part of the project will focus upon reinstating wildflower meadows within the local area.
Lost Landscapes and Learning: Project Aims and Outcomes for our school
School wide we will:
- Create a wildflower meadow within the grounds of the school
- Have a celebration event to mark the creation of the wildflower meadow and the completion of the project.
All of our pupils will:
- Give assembly presentations on local history
- Get a chance to meet local people with interesting stories to tell
- Plant out and complete activities within the schools new wildflower meadow.
KS2 Year 4 classes will specifically:
- Take a trip to Rainton Meadows to learn how to map read, interpret historical maps (Geography) and identify common species of wildflower and tree (Science)
- Within school learn about the heritage of their local area and the chance to question local historians/residents with interesting stories to tell (History)
- Visit Galley Gill to put their map reading (Geography) and species identification skills (Science) nto the test and to learn about the sites history (History, particularly Vikings) and learn how to use tools to complete conservation tasks (Design and Technology & Science)
- Within school share their work and findings and produce interpretation materials for Galleys Gill and the schools new widlflower meadow. Prepare and deliver whole school assemblies, and organize an opening event for the wildflower meadow (English & Computing).