Our aim is to promote sustainability, reduce plastics,increase student engagement in environmental issues and encourage student voice.
Change requires active engagement and Wyedean School has set up an Eco Club in order to promote understanding, engage with the local community and develop initiates within school to encourage biodiversity.
Our logo drawn by Maddie Skidmore encompasses our beliefs and passions in terms of reforestation, ensuring clean water is accessible to everyone and keeping the planet tidy and litter free.
Eco club is run by Miss Barabto and Mrs Coggins. Eco club also has a twitter page: @WyeEco https://twitter.com/WyeEco
Wye-Eco was very pleased to accept a generous donation to establish an orchard and on 17th May 2019 a group of students were shown how to plant and take care of fruit trees during their lunchtime and part of lesson 5. We hope to raise more money in order to add to the orchard.
Fruit trees on Wyedean School land being and the produce is being made to good use.
Wyedean School also has a cherry tree, an apple tree in the front of the school and a pear tree near the music block. In October 2019 the Eco club picked fruit trees from this apple tree and spend the rest of lunch and lesson 5 making apple and blackberry jam. The blackberries were picked by Miss Barbato in July and frozen. Mrs Coggins and Miss Barbato showed students how to make jam. The Wye-Eco jam will be sold at open evenings. Our aim is to repeat continue to make jam every October.
In June 2020 a group of students were taken to pick cherries from the tree. In the picture you can see Mrs Carver kindly pulling down a branch for the students to pick the cherries. The students were taken out twice to pick the cherries and took them home to eat. They were delicious!
The Eco garden and Greenhouse
Students in the Eco club and sixth form enrichment have spent a year organising and maintaining the Eco garden. We were proud to have cleared most of the weeds and overgrowth. At the start of lockdown students of key workers planted onion and cabbage seeds. The Eco garden requires a lot of maintenance as a result we have plans to re organise it in order to create a wildflower learning garden with one herb and one vegetable box. Plans for this will September. This will require organisation, volunteers, fundraising and donations. However, we believe this long term project will benefit our students and teachers. In addition we won funding for an Eco greenhouse which will consist of technology that will self-water the plants and regulate the temperature. The Cyber and Technology clubs were working together to make this a reality and the project will continue when we return.
May 2019 students working on the Eco garden
Students in March 2020 planting onions and cabbage
At the front of the school we have a newly built study garden. In picture are some A-level History students having a lesson in the study garden and using this space to have discussions.
Departments with an Eco theme
Students at Wyedean School displaying their amazing projects all designed with an Eco theme for their DT exam.26 April 2019
The Geography department 2017 investigating infiltration, surface run off and erosion on different surfaces.
In 2018 the art department joined the Geography department to investigate formations.
The Geography department took students to Fossil Beach in 2017 to investigate erosion, sedimentation and fossils.
Charity Work and Fundraising
World Book Day 2019
All donations were split between the charity and the Eco Club. Thanks to our main face painters Anna Brown, Jasmine, Anwen Smart and Sarah O’Brian.
Cake and ice cream sales
Profits went to the Eco Club in order to raise money for a new water fountain.
Last day of term December 2019
All donations went to the local Chepstow Foodbank. Thanks to our face painters.
Last day of term December 2017
All donations went to the local Chepstow foodbank
Creativity and Competitions
Our poet Laureate Frey Cook has been busy during lockdown taking an online poetry course through Futurelearn. She shared a poem she wrote for escapril which is a poetry challenge where you write a poem every day in April, inspired by a daily prompt. It has a wonderful nature theme.
In May 2020 Emma Cole was shocked and thrilled to have been awarded 3rd place in Portrait Artist of the Week with her painting of Will Young. Click on the link to watch the judge (and artist) Tai Shan Shierenberg talking about it.
In January 2020 the Eco club entered the Royal Town Planning competition and won best presentation. Presentation for certificates and the gift vouchers will be in September 2020.
Wyedean School’s 2019 Christmas card competition organised by the Art department and included an Eco theme including an excellent penned verse from our poet laureate Luke Tomeley to go inside the cards.
Brand new toys
Plethora of food
But with climate change breaking the new
It’s the earth we abuse
Don’t put your wrapping paper in the refuse
Recycle, Reduce, Re-use
Make our planet a better destination
Think about the next generation
Wyedean School’s 2018 Christmas card competition organised by the Art department and included an Eco theme
Students at Wyedean School entered The Plastic Free Chepstow Summer Challenge 2019. The aim was to create an attention-grabbing anti-litter message, poster, song, video and poem. The judging panel consisted of Plastic Free Chepstow, Keep Wales Tidy and Monmouthshire County Council, and an equal number of young people from Chepstow Comprehensive.
Prize winners included Corentine Dumond, Tom Morgan and Maddie Skidmore won the competition. One of the prizes included being mentored by a professional communications/production expert from Monmouthshire Council and creating a video to use for a country wide little campaign. Unfortunately due to Covid 19 this did not happen but we are hopeful that the mentorship will resume after the pandemic.
The Big Bean
The Big Bean Café was established in 2016 and resides in the sixth form block at Wyedean School. Its aim is to serve local, fresh and delicious food. The café is striving to make a positive change to the planet by souring local food and it does not have or sell any plastic. That means there are no plastic bottles, straws and sauce packets. All the coffee and smoothies cups are compostable.
Any food waste from the Bean and Canteen gets put into the rocket digester to be turned into soil and used on the Eco garden.
Sixth Form students at Wyedean School who take the hospitality course help to run the Big Bean during break and lunch. This is a great experience for students to learn hands on about the Hospitality Catering industry. The learning also links to their course and examination. As part of their course pupils will gain Level 2 Hygiene and Safety certificate. The students also enjoy organising pop up stalls and serve anything from pizza, crepes, nachos to Spanish chorus.
The Big Bean enjoys participating in the creative festival every year organised by the Art teacher Mrs Collins. It has also caters for events. It has hosted charity events, concerts, a music mic night to raise money and awareness for Amnesty International and BBC radio 4’s Any Questions with David Dimbleby.
The Climate Action Day
On behalf of Cllr McFarling, Cabinet member for Climate Emergency the Eco club was invited to a Climate Action Day for Town and Parish Councils on 30th March 2020. Unfortunately due to the pandemic this was cancelled.
The day would have consisted of a full day workshop which will go into the details of climate action planning.
The day would have consisted of multiple elements:
An introduction to climate science and the scale and pace of changes needed so that our community is carbon neutral and resilient;
A series of practical action presentations covering topics such as tree planting, energy efficiency, communicating with the community and fundraising;
An action planning session, giving local councils a high level climate action plan for their parish.
The Forest of Dean District Council was hosting the day in partnership with the Centre for Sustainable Energy as part of activity in response to the Council Climate Emergency declaration.
Plastic Free Chepstow
The Eco club have also met with members of Plastic Free Chepstow and entered their summer competition. Plastic Free Chepstow sent us equipment to help us with our intended beach clean including gloves and sacks. We also met with Tessa Perry from Plastic Free Chepstow in June 2019 to discuss how Wyedean can participate in becoming more Eco friendly.
In February 2018 Transition Chepstow launched a campaign to reduce the amount of plastic used once and then just thrown away in its town and to replace plastic with other materials that can be composted or disposed of safely, to reuse materials as much as possible, and to recycle wherever we can. One of their aims is to make links with local schools. We met with Tessa Perry from Plastic Free Chepstow in June 2019 to discuss how Wyedean can participate in becoming more Eco friendly.
A link to their website: Plastic Free Chepstow
In March 2019 year 8 students from the Technology Club with the help of Mr Gibson made a container out of pallet boxes. As soon as the students had finished they brought it up to show me and I took a picture (below) outside my room. This very impressive container was put in the canteen. This became very popular and we went from emptying the box from once a month to once a week. We aim to make more in 2020.
Wyedean School aims to reduce its plastic consumption by stopping the sale of plastic bottles in the canteen. We are currently working on buying more water fountains before we stop the sale of plastic bottles and promoting the use of reusable bottles. The goal is for every student in Wyedean School to bring a reusable bottle to school. We conducted a survey and found that at least half the students in the school already bring a reusable bottle into school.
Cyber Club were given reusable bottles by CGI-UKnews helping us to reduce our plastic consumption.
Every room in the school has been given a recyclable box. Teachers have chosen to either fill them with plastic bottle or paper. In the picture Eco club are helping to build the first few recyclable boxes April 2019.
Earth Day is celebrated by over 193 countries every year. Events are held to demonstrate support for environmental protection. Wyedean School is taking part in Earth day on 5th April. Our aim is to promote sustainability, reduce plastics and increase student engagement in environmental issues and encourage student voice.
At Wyedean School we celebrated our first Earth Day on 5th April 2019.
- A non-school uniform day was organised where students were asked to wear earth colours and money was donated to the Eco club in order to buy another water fountain.
- All lessons had an eco-theme.
- Mrs Coggins and Ms Barbato gave talks in assemblies to KS3, 4 and 5 about Eco Club and Earth Day.
- The biodiversity club run by Mr Rugg had a donation of trees from the Woodland Trust our aim was for all students in KS3 to have the opportunity of planting a tree on rotation however, it rained for the whole day. As a result a group of volunteers went in the week at lunchtimes to plant the trees.
- We had a cake sale at lunchtime to raise money.
- We had planned to celebrate Eco Day in 202 0but due to the pandemic we were unable to as a result an article was written along with links to podcasts that were made available to all students on SMHW and our WyeEco twitter account.
- We aim to celebrate Eco day in 2021 and we are currently looking for speakers and planning ideas for activities.
An Eco themed lesson
The cake sale was popular
Students planting trees
Students emptying the very popular pallet box in our canteen.
Earth Day on 22nd April 2020
Wyedean School would have been celebrating Earth Day on 22nd April 2020 along with many other schools all over the world. Lessons would have been tailored with an environmental theme, our governor had organised speakers to come into school and we were working on making Wyedean School more environmentally friendly. We had a lot to celebrate and many projects in the pipeline. Maddie Skidmore won funding for an Eco greenhouse which will consist of technology that will self-water the plants and regulate the temperature. The Cyber and Technology clubs were working together to make this a reality and this will continue when we return. We won a town planning competition in February and ambassadors had planned to come to the school to present awards and certificates. The year 7 year group had participated in two local litter picking days in Sedbury. We were also in the process of applying to become an Eco school. In addition, we had plans to extend the orchard, create a wildflower garden and we were working on reorganising the school vegetable garden. Our plans and projects will continue when we return.
Why is Earth Day important? Earth Day helps to raise awareness of environmental issues and seeks to work together to help create a more eco-friendly world. It also aims to decrease pollution, protect habitats and prevent deforestation. Nearly half of the world’s species of plants, animals and microorganisms live in rainforests and experts believe we are losing 136 plant, animal and inset species every day due to deforestation. That equates to 49,650 species every year. The Amazon rainforest lost 12 million acres of forest in 2019 and the size of 8.4 million football fields last decade. Rainforests use to cover 14% of the Earth’s land and now it covers a mere 6%. One and a half acres are lost every second.
What can we do to help? Plant a tree, build a bird box/feeder, start a compost bin, ditch the plastic straws, go paperless, unplug unused devices, Use detergents, soaps, and cleaning products that are biodegradable and eco-friendly, buy locally, grow your own food, Support sustainable fishing, Use oxybenzone-free sunscreens, Petition the government for better laws, Support local NGOs and volunteer, volunteer for a beach clean.
What has been the impact of Covid 19 on our environment? This pandemic has unwittingly produced some other large-scale, though less conspicuous, effects. In a bittersweet twist, the surreal slowdown of life as we know it has presented some positive outcomes for the environment.
1: Air pollution levels have plummeted. Lockdown has improved the air quality index to satisfactory levels in nearly 90% of the 103 cities, according to NASA and Bloomberg.
2: The canals in Venice have cleared. A spokesperson for the Venice mayoral office stated: “The once murky, grey water now looks clearer because there is less traffic on the canals, allowing the sediment to stay at the bottom. It's because there is less boat traffic that usually brings sediment to the top of the water's surface." This has welcomed swans, fish and seabirds back to the canals.
3: Animals are seen roaming in city centres: monkeys are seen roaming in a Thailand city plaza. In Japan their famous Nara Park, home to 1,000-something deer have begun wandering through the city. In Llandudno, Wales, a herd of goats have been making the most of the deserted streets by flocking to its empty town centre.
4: People are reconnecting with nature: One of the good things to have come out of social distancing is that we are letting the outdoors recharge us. We've been forced to pause, slow down, reflect and appreciate the little things our gardens and local walking paths have to offer – from morning birdsongs to the riot of pastel colours pouring from our seasonal blossom trees.
5: Cows have been reintroduced at the Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland: The National Trust's site has welcomed a group of grazing cows to help revive wildlife and the animals are ow able to settle into their new surroundings in peace. "Particularly at this time, when our sites are closed to the public, it's great to know the cattle are there, working away for conservation of the bay." Cliff Henry, Area Ranger for the National Trust.
Litter Picking with community engagement officer from the Forest of Dean
Wyedean School Students volunteered to take part in our second local community clean up in March and January 2020, their dedication and behaviour was exemplary. For an hour students went to two local parks and a variety of green spaces to assess the area and clean rubbish. Our local community engagement officer for the Forest of Dean-Leah Treherne provided equipment and guided us to areas of most concern. Students found a range of litter from plastics to bottles. Students reflected on their experiences in forms. Many had stating that they enjoyed the activity and found it had a positive impact on themselves and on the local wildlife.
Year 7 Litter Picking in the local area of Sedbury
A huge well done for year 7 students who volunteered to take part in our second local community clean up in March and January, their dedication and behaviour was exemplary. For an hour students went to two local parks and a variety of green spaces to assess the area and clean rubbish. Our local community engagement officer-Leah provided equipment and guided us to areas of most concern. Students found a range of litter from plastics to bottles. Students reflected on their experiences in forms. Many had stating that they enjoyed the activity and found it had a positive impact on themselves and on the local wildlife. This initiative will be repeated in Sedbury and Tutshill as we feel it is important to look after our community and teach our students the importance of recycling and reducing our plastic waste.
January 29th 2020
Links with the Wye River Festival and Monmouth Council
Sue Parkinson the Waste and Recycling Education and Awareness Officer for Monmouth Council invited students from Wyedean School to participate in the Wye River Festival 2020. We were very honoured as we were the only secondary school to participate.
Mrs Collins from the Art department was creating art work to display at the festival and two of our students from Eco club were preparing to deliver speeches relating to the environment and the festival theme –time. Unfortunate due to Covid 19 this was cancelled, however, we hope to participate in next year’s festival. Wye Valley River Festival
BBC Earth: https://player.fm/series/bbc-earth-podcast
BBC radio 4: Costing the Earth: https://player.fm/series/costing-the-earth-1301231 Fresh ideas from the sharpest minds working toward a cleaner, greener planet
Environmental podcasts: https://www.sej.org/library/environmental-podcasts: Breaking news on the environment, climate change, pollution, and endangered species.
Our Changing World: https://player.fm/series/rnz-our-changing-world-2410779 Getting out in the field and the lab to bring you New Zealand stories about science, nature and the environment.
Sustainababble: https://player.fm/series/sustainababble-1443079 Sea Change Radio is a nationally syndicated weekly radio show and podcast covering the shift to social, environmental, and economic sustainability.
Living on Earth: https://player.fm/series/living-on-earth As the planet we call home faces a climate emergency, Living on Earth is your go-to source for the latest coverage of climate change, ecology, and human health.
Greenpeace Podcast: https://player.fm/series/greenpeace-podcast
For the Wild: https://player.fm/series/for-the-wild-84000 a forum where we discuss the critical ideas of our time and parlay them into action for the regeneration of natural communities. Key topics include the rediscovery of wild nature, ecological renewal and resistance, and healing from the trauma of individualistic society. We will travel deep into ancient forests, and enter the minds of Earth-based people, rekindling the mysteries of intuition. We will join today’s brightest visionaries in this momentous work of reimagining a world where humanity can find its way back into the web of life.
Environment and Climate news: https://player.fm/series/environment-and-climate-news-podcast featuring scientists, authors, and policy experts who take the non-alarmist, climate-realist position on environment and energy policy.
The Wild Podcast: https://player.fm/series/the-wild explore the beauty and wonder of the outdoors and its inhabitants. From beavers to wolves to grizzly bears we experience up close the resilient power of nature and our relationship with it.
Off Track https://player.fm/series/off-track an Australian radio show and podcast which combines the relaxing sounds of nature with awesome stories of wildlife and environmental science, all recorded in the outdoors.
Sea Change: https://player.fm/series/sea-change-radio-21036 covering the shift to social, environmental, and economic sustainability.
Green Dreamer https://player.fm/series/green-dreamer-sustainability-and-regeneration-from-ideas-to-life Illuminating our paths to ecological regeneration, intersectional sustainability, and true abundance and wellness for all, inspiring conversations featuring changemakers including Adrian Grenier of Lonely Whale Foundation, zero waste pioneer Bea Johnson, Earthjustice's Abigail Dillen, food waste activist Tristram Stuart, Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm, 1% For the Planet's Kate Williams
The Field Guides: https://player.fm/series/the-field-guides The Field Guides is a monthly podcast that will bring you out on the trail, focusing on the science of our North American wildlife.
Speak up for Blue https://player.fm/series/speak-up-for-the-ocean-blue raises awareness of the variety of ocean science and conservation projects conducted all around the world. On the podcast episodes, I discuss, sharks, marine mammals (whales, dolphins, manatees, sea lions, seals), seabirds, fish (tuna, salmon, mackerel, cod, etc) as well as ocean issues like climate change/global warming (ocean acidification, increased sea temperatures, sea level rise, arctic melting, changing weather patterns), water pollution, plastic pollution (single-use plastic), coastal development, overfishing, whale hunting, fish poaching and more.
The Zero Waste Countdown: https://player.fm/series/the-zero-waste-countdown-podcast Finding alternatives to single-use plastics, reducing our waste, and reducing our environmental footprint.
Marine Conservation Happy Hour: https://player.fm/series/marine-conservation-happy-hour looks at the many different sides of Marine Science and Conservation in an informal setting. Everyone is a marine scientist who is passionate about the Ocean, marine mammals sharks and other fish, invertebrates.
Future Ecologies: https://player.fm/series/future-ecologies Every episode weaves together narrative storytelling, informative interviews, and science communication, supported by evocative soundscapes and music.
Mind over Matters https://player.fm/series/kexp-presents-mind-over-matters-sustainability-segment one-on-one interviews with inspiring leaders and grass roots activists on a variety of environmental, social, and economic issues affecting life and the future of our planet.
Radio Ecoshock: https://player.fm/series/the-radio-ecoshock-show featuring the latest science, authors, issues - from climate change, oceans, forests, pollution, Peak Oil, the economy, and peace.
Mongobay Newscast: https://player.fm/series/mongabay-newscast inspiring guests and deeper analysis of the global environmental issues explored every day by the Mongabay.com team, from climate change to biodiversity, tropical ecology, wildlife, and more.
Political Climate https://player.fm/series/political-climate A bipartisan podcast on energy and environmental politics in America. Presented by the USC Schwarzenegger Institute. Political Climate goes beyond the echo chambers to bring you civil conversations, fierce debates and insider perspectives, with hosts and guests from across the political spectrum.
Nature Guys https://player.fm/series/nature-guys Nature Guys connects you to the exciting natural world right in your own neighborhood. These nature connections will help you be cool, calm, collected and ready to make a positive difference in the world. Nature Guys is co-hosted by Bob a long time nature lover and Bill a professional naturalist for over 40 years.
Trees are Key: https://player.fm/series/trees-are-key From planting to pruning, famous to flowering, to soil, sun and shade, and what to do when faced with disaster.
Environment China: https://player.fm/series/environment-chinaEnvironment China is a bilingual podcast from the Beijing Energy Network. The show features conversations with advocates, entrepreneurs, and experts working in the environmental field in China.
Websites / Articles
Interesting websites and clips that have been posted on our twitter page focused on sustainability and how people and governments are making a difference.
Human Planet shown on BBC
All 8 episodes examine how different peoples have adapted to their natural surroundings around the world. Episodes are: Desert-Life in the Furnace, Jungles-People of the Trees, Artic-life in the Deep Freeze, Grasslands-the Roots of Power, Rivers-Friend and Foe, Mountains, Oceans-Into the Blue and Cities-Surviving the Urban Jungles.
BB programmes - episode guide
David Attenborough travels to the end of the earth, taking viewers on an extraordinary journey across the polar regions of our planet.
Frozen Planet still available to watch on iplayer
Frozen Planet Complete-David-Attenborough available on DVD Amazon
David Attenborough celebrates the amazing variety of the natural world in this epic documentary series, filmed over 4 years across 64 different countries.
Planet Earth watch for free
Planet Earth - BBC iplayer
Down to Earth on Netflix
Actor Zak Efron journeys around the world with wellness expert Darin Olien in a travel show that explores healthy, sustainable ways to live.
China on Four Wheels BB2 documentary
Anita Rani and Justin Rowlatt embark on two epic car journeys across China, navigating congested cities and winding mountain roads to explore how the country's economic growth, symbolised by its booming car industry, is affecting people's lives.
https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p00wrgyp BBC iplayer
https://vimeo.com/286037665 free to watch vimeo
Chasing Ice is a 2012 documentary film about the efforts of nature photographer James Balog and his Extreme Ice Survey (EIS) to publicize the effects of climate change,
Chasing Ice - documentary
Documenting the fast-paced disappearance of one of the world’s seven natural wonders: the ocean’s elegantly constructed coral reefs.
Chasing Coral free watch. You can also find this on Netflix.
The Blue Planet
A natural History of the ocean narrated by David Attenborough - Blue Planet
Before the Flood
The film follows actor Leonardo DiCaprio as he examines the impact of global warming in various locales around the globe
Before the Flood Free Watch also on Amazon prime.
Planet of the Humans
Explores the environmental movement and how it has failed to fix environmental concerns such as climate change.
More than Honey
Youtube clip you tube clip
Facts about Bees