An Eco Welcome
Through our learning, we believe in caring for, protecting and sharing our environment with plants, animals and each other.
Recycled wood transformed into Xmas decorations, created by our site manager,
Mr Hemmings for charity.
Global Climate Performance
Yesterday, Years 5 and 6 enjoyed an exciting performance from Kingston Grammar. The aim of the performance was to explain what is climate change and to educate children on the small, everyday tasks they can do to fight against climate change.
“I really enjoyed the performance this morning. I learned a lot about what I can do to help climate change. It was a very energetic performance
which made it interesting and exciting. It also told me in a fun way that I have to do something about climate change. It reinforced the message
about recycling, use of plastics and how we move around. It really made me think that it’s important to make a difference.” Maddie Year 5
We did a litter pick down by the Hogsmill river by our school and sent an application into blue peter for a blue peter green badge and we are so grateful to have received our blue peter badges.
We picked up a big tub of litter along with an over flowing bag of trash. I loved making the blue peter badge with my best friends. We made it out of the litter we picked up. - by Hannah.
We spent about an hour picking up all kinds of litter and other strange things and then we came back to my house and started to sort out the litter. Then we made the blue peter badge out of the litter. - By Maddie
We took a picture of it because it was too big to send it in the letter. It was one of the best days of my life as it was so much fun to do it with two of my best friends. - by Isabel
Children from the eco-committee discussed the upcoming visit from the Eco-Schools assessment team. They are looking forward to meeting them very soon and will be proud to tell them what St John's, as a whole school, have done just in the last year:
Stopped using plastic cutlery, straws and cups
Packed away the laminator unless absolutely necessary
Stopped nearly all classes using sticky back plastic for their books
Erected an exciting new outdoor learning cabin
Class 6 big plastic project/assembly/letters
Achieved gold active travel plan
Daily mile and colourful playground activity route
Outdoor Reflection garden
Cut a hedgehog friendly area in our fence
Launched a cloth bag design competition
Waste project including clothes
Recycled over a thousand batteries
Interviewed Mrs Hutchinson for the latest plans in our environmentally aware school and she says we have great plans including: not buying any more glitter (because guess what it's made from), digging a pond are to further encourage biodiversity in our school grounds, and most amazingly, applied to the institute of physics for a wind turbine to power our outdoor learning cabin.
Watch this space for news and more information. From the Eco Team :)
In the meantime, watch these:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ki8Ia8WF5d0 Biodiversity - what is it for young children: KS1
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PN0mPI7-Yvo A Heart Breaking Situation " Drowning in Plastic: KS2
And look at our latest addition in the school grounds, wow! For further information, please click on the forest schooling link to see Stephen's transformation of outdoor learning and the colourful plans by Hannah, our resident artist @hannahshines01 on Instagram
Design a Bag Competition
We launched this event to highlight the fact that plastic bags are often used once then thrown away. They often end up in our seas and oceans and hurt marine life.
We wanted to combine all 57 entries and create our own St John's cloth bag but discovered that we couldn't afford to get them printed. Anyone with contacts to printers who can help - yes please!
The children have been the judges. Well done to all. Hover over the pictures to see our finalists.
Darwin Year 3 spent a fabulous Stone Age day under the guidance of our Forest School Founder, Stephen Simpson and his team, up at Kingston University, Kingston Hill site. What a super environment for all to enjoy cave painting, flint knapping, shelter building, roasting venison and of course marshmallows! Thanks to Stephen, Hannah, the forest school team and Kingston uni outreach team.
Photographs below courtesy of Hannah and you will find her paintings at https://www.instagram.com/hannahshines01/
Her rewilding painting of St John's outdoor space will be uploaded very soon :)
Tree Planting Day
Children and staff have been busy planting 400 trees donated by The Woodland Trust. The children enjoyed the experience of planting these as hedgerow along our new fence on the field. This was followed by discussions in class on the importance of planting trees for our environment and how our outdoor space will be used more in the future.
Ian said," It was great fun. I didn't know we had to plant them that deeply. I learnt a lot."
In the bible it says, You shall not pollute the land in which you live.
Hands together and eyes closed.
Help people to understand that plastic is killing marine life and filling up our seas, rivers, lakes and oceans. Help people to stop littering and make our world great. Amen.
Turing Class 6 have been inspired to work on a big project about plastic pollution. They have investigated, reported, written lots of letters to important people and their passion and hard work culminated in a whole school assembly. They even demanded to ‘hijack’ part of the school newsletter to spread the word about helping marine life. The impact a whole class has made is to be congratulated and demonstrates courageous justice - well done!
THE HOGSMILL WATER TREATMENT WORKS July 2019
by Georgia and Rosie
Today Year 5 visited the Hogsmill Treatment work and had great fun. As part of the day we did may three experiments, a nature walk and a visit to the various water treatment stages.
First of all, Denna from Thames Water explained to us the processing of sewage and how it is turned into
clean water. In the morning, our first experiment showed what things we should and shouldn’t flush down the toilet. These are the 4 P’s - pee paper poo and puke.
We discovered that baby wipes are a big problem because they are plastic and don’t breakdown, but paper does. The second experiment showed us ‘poo power.’We used sugar yeast and water to make a ‘sewage sludge’. We put this in a bottle and attached a balloon to it to catch the gas and it inflated. This showed us a similar process to
the sewage sludge in which Thames put in a large round tank. Inside the tank there is a balloon and it catches the methane. This gas is used to generate electricity - poo power.
The third experiment - 'filtering sewage soup' simulated how sewage is filtered. We discovered sand is very good at filtering out bits and pieces in the sewage and it widely used at the treatment works.
In the afternoon we went on a short walk and saw the different process involved in treating sewage. I found out that bacteria are used to breakdown the sewage into water and sewage sludge in large bubbling tanks. The sewage works were less smelly that I thought. We saw the baby wipes being filtered out of the sewage and put into skips. At the last stage, the water was cleaned but it was not clean enough to drink. All the water that is treated goes into the Hogsmill river which runs by the side of the treatment works.
Finally, we went on a small nature walk. The Hogsmill river has a lot of wildlife, but we didn’t see many animals because we were quite high up. We saw some bees and butterflies, brambles and lots of nettles.
"I really enjoyed my visit to St John's - both staff and the Eco Committee members are very knowledgeable and keen to do all they can to ensure that their school runs as sustainably as possible. All children have a chance to put forward ideas and to take responsibility for projects which encourage eco projects throughout the school. They are role models for the rest of the school and find many innovative ways to encourage whole school and community participation. They also ensure that they disseminate new ideas, competitions and survey results to the rest of the school.
I was extremely impressed by the children's knowledge, their good manners and their enthusiasm for the Eco Schools work with ideas and actions being suggested and worked through by all the children from the youngest to the older year 6 children who I hope will continue their good work by setting great examples when they get to their secondary schools. Keep up the amazing, great work St John's and congratulations on all your hard work and enthusiasm which has enabled you to gain the Green Flag yet again."
Karen Fullerton, Eco-Schools Inspector
We will make our voices clear on the things we believe are important:
recycling where possible
encouraging healthy living
valuing and conserving clean water
encouraging bio-diversity in our school grounds
walking, cycling, scooting and public transport as much as possible
continuing our relationship with M'khalapadzuwa school
Written by the Eco-committee
Our beautiful local environment:
KINGSTON upon THAMES
We celebrated a super Humanities project about our borough, Kingston upon Thames. This project was carefully planned by Mrs Constable, our Humanities Lead in school with the aim of all children getting involved with the support of parents. It acknowledged the great and interesting landmarks found in Kingston, so well done to the children who joined in with this project. I believe a mark of a great school is one that encourages and motivates its children to be part of a bigger picture.
On 3rd May, we have the Mayor and Mayoress coming to look at all the projects that have been handed in. We are making a display of all of them. We would like some comments/quotes from you to say how you found the day with your child around Kingston while completing this project.
It is really interesting to see how much energy we use at school. Can you see a pattern for what happens during the summer months?