The Manx Wildlife Trust’s Biodiversity Education Officer visited The Buchan School recently, to hand out prizes to the winners of an ‘eco-art’ competition and see the siting of new bird boxes, hedgehog houses and insect hotels.
Sarah Watterson-Griffiths, Head of Art at The Buchan School, said teachers and pupils are proud to call The Buchan an eco-school.
Mrs Watterston-Griffiths explained: ‘The Buchan actively runs a range of eco activities and ensures its pupils are fully aware of issues such as the human impact on the environment, animal welfare, smart (ethically responsible) shopping, cruelty free products, recycling and the use of natural resources, to name but a few.
‘We feel that children of the 21st century should be proactive, compassionate, responsible, appreciative and aware, in order that they can help to reverse the negative impact humans are having on our planet and the environment and to help prevent animal cruelty in all its forms.
‘We also feel it is essential that children are educated to value and protect nature, wildlife, and our resources, and be able to make positive, good decisions on a daily basis that in turn have a positive impact for the good of all.’
‘I’d like to thank Dawn Dickens, the Trust’s Biodiversity Education Officer, for coming into the school to talk the children and support our eco-school initiatives.’
‘I have worked with pupils from The Buchan School over several years and their ethos as regards the natural world and wildlife is demonstrated in conversations with the pupils,’ said Dawn.
‘Through artwork, craftwork, field trips assemblies and talks which the Manx Wildlife Trust has helped with, the children are brought closer to the natural world, its importance and the pleasure it can bring. It’s a great introduction to the importance of caring for our world in a lively, meaningful and stimulating way, as well as the incredible biodiversity we have on the Island.’
Some of the initiatives undertaken by The Buchan eco-school include:
• Vegetable Garden
• Vegetable and fruit from garden (organic) used in school lunches
• Eco assemblies and talks – topics including wildlife care, Beach Buddies, plastic and the environment, cruelty-free shopping, hedgehog care, reuse and recycle
• Bee hives
• Honey production, beeswax products
• Paper recycling
• House plant maintenance in school
• Litter collection (all done by F4 Eco Warriors)
• School eco signage
• Wild bird feeding programme
• Arts enterprise – making and selling arts and crafts product, proceeds donated to the World Wildlife Fund
• Art and Design department makes bird houses, insect hotels and hedgehog houses
• Tree planting (KWC/Buchan groundsmen)
• Wood maintenance
• Staffroom waste composting
Photo - left to right - Rhona Wilson, Amelie Harding, Celize Vorster, Sofia Douglas, Peter Cope, Sam Parker, and Holly Greenwood with the new bird boxes.