At Wilberforce Primary, pupils are vowing to cut down their usage of single use plastic and to think more about the way that they impact their communities and the wider environment.
Wilberforce Primary is working in partnership with the campaign ‘A Future Without Rubbish’ – a programme run by social enterprise Clear Public Space which is dedicated to reducing litter in public spaces and increasing recycling rates.
The academy has given each of its Key Stage 2 pupils a stainless steel water bottle to use throughout the year. Each bottle must be used 500 times before becoming sustainable, so pupils are encouraged to take good care of their bottle and bring it to school each day. At the end of the academic year, pupils will be awarded for their efforts by receiving a diploma, recognising their strong commitment to the project.
Last term, Jo Ruxton, founder of the Plastic Ocean Foundation, visited the school and taught pupils about the damage plastic is doing to our oceans. Following this, staff designed a whole school Save our Seas topic focused on teaching children about the oceans and how they can reduce waste.
Over the coming months, pupils at Wilberforce Primary will continue to build up their knowledge about the environment and complement their learning in the classroom by taking part in a number of exciting trips and events. Year 6 pupils are set to visit the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) Lifeboat Station at Tower Bridge. There, RNLI crew members will teach the pupils about sea and beach safety and how lifeboat rescues work.
Later on in the term, pupils will also get the opportunity to hear from representatives of Thames Water, who will give an assembly teaching pupils about the importance of being water wise.
Head Boy Adyan said:
“This is a really good way to help the environment as these bottles aren’t made of plastic.”
Head Girl Ritaj said:
“Now that we have a water bottle we don’t have to think about buying a bottle of water for school every day and by not buying plastic bottles we are saving the sea.”
Claire Macfie, Head Teacher of Wilberforce Primary, said:
“As part of our commitment to Education with Character, we have ensured that the Save our Seas topic is as engaging and interactive as possible and goes beyond the boundaries of classroom learning. Pupils have really engaged with the topic so far and have been very enthusiastic in using their new water bottles.
“We are directly showing pupils how small differences in their own lives can have a large, positive impact upon the environment and we hope to inspire pupils to become responsible and considerate young people. I am looking forward to continue to teach our pupils about how they can reduce, re-use and recycle throughout the rest of the school year.”
Luke Douglas-Home from A future without Rubbish said:
“The project started in Romania and has already increased recycling rates by 36% in one council area. Behaviours really are changing and education combined with economics is the most powerful way to start.”