Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Teaching the Teachers!

On the14th of March after school the teaching staff met to have a training session on school grounds with Dean Morrison. Dean is a friend of the school who has experience in this area and who has recently completed the 'Learning Through Landscapes' 'School Grounds Advisor' accreditation.

Dean started by showing us some inspirationational images of what can be achieved; from the 'Growing School Grounds' Project in Eltham, and also from previous work he has done in Devon.

We then had a look at the grounds at Castledown to think about where we might put some of our ideas into place.

Dean then explained the process that we need to go through to change our school for the better.

In brief there are two things we can do to help us get started, and to help us achieve a successful project:

1. Involve everybody in the school, as well as parents and the local community, in what we are doing

2. Find out what we already have: what are grounds look like? how they feel to us? how do we use them? are there things we need to know about ( like buried electicity cables!)

- we can then make some plans about what changes we would like to make.

- in the meantime there are some projects that we can start straight away - like picking up litter, and planting some new shrubs at the front of the school.

'Learning through Landscapes' have ideas about planning projects, as do 'Schoolscapes' - we have now joined them and organisations such as BTCV for more help and advice - see the links on the right. (Our membership number for Learning through Landscapes is 203767)

Thursday, March 09, 2006

We've made a start!

Mulch! (this will help to keep weeds down and will eventually break down to make the soil better)
Dean using the chainsaw - see how big the shrubs had grown!

Dean using the chainsaw(can you see the special clothes he is wearing?)

The chipping machine.

Now the shrubs have been cut back we can pick up the litter! ( the shubs will grow back again this year). This type is called Hebe (pronounced Hee-Bee).

To make a start Dean and some friends have chopped back the overgrown shrubs at the front of the school, and turned them into 'mulch' using a chipping machine.

This will give us lots of room for planting new things, and will make it easier for us to pick up the litter!

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