This week the pupils of St Ives School in Haslemere have taken part in a three-day Green Festival as part of the school’s pledge to become an international Green Flag Award Eco-School. The school has committed to raise its understanding of the environmental issues facing the world and how the school can contribute, both as a whole and as individuals, to a more sustainable future.
St Ives is following the programme set up by environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy. Internationally, the programme is the largest educational programme in the world. It is present in nearly 70 countries with millions of children participating. St Ives is now part of this global community working to create environmental change for its pupils and future generations.
The festival focused on Global Citizenship and what is takes to be a good citizen. Children were given St Ives passports and spent the first two days of the festival ‘travelling’ around the school visiting different countries, learning about their cultures and economies. They enjoyed age-appropriate activities which stretched from designing Chinese fans, to creating a Spanish themed mosaic, dancing to the beat of African drums, making Brazilian truffles and learning about eco-systems in Antarctica.
Children also enjoyed a presentation on Fairtrade and learnt what it means to help producers in developing countries achieve better trading conditions, with the younger children doing a Fairtrade scavenger hunt around two local supermarkets, whilst the older children learnt about the food production chain and healthy eating, culminating in using smoothie bike to produce their own smoothies! They also attended workshops on carbon footprints and clothing production, introducing them to a more sustainable and ethical way of living. The festival ended with all the children decorating Fairtrade organic cotton bags to take home.
Mrs Kay Goldsworthy, Head Teacher at St Ives, said “Our Green Festival on Global Citizenship has been fantastic. Every pupil now has an understanding that everything they buy - from clothing to food – has a supply chain, where everyone within the chain deserves to work in good conditions and receive fair pay. This is what makes us decent global citizens!”