All over the Isle of Wight, children can now be seen carrying their converted Bestival Adopt-A-Bottles to and from school. Visit a classroom and you will see trays full of the striking designer bottles. They have clearly captured the imagination of children, who are happy to show off their bottles and be pictured holding them.
Over 10,000 bottles have been distributed to Island schoolchildren to date.
31 Island schools have now received the Adopt-A-Bottles, including the two private schools Ryde Junior and Priory School.
The majority of Isle of Wight primary schools have now joined the international Eco-schools programme. In total, 43 IW Council schools out of 69 are now members. Ryde Junior (Private) School have also joined and achieved Green Flag status. In the past year, Green Flags have also been awarded to Brighstone, Clatterford Tuition Centre, Newport Primary and Northwood Primary. The following have joined since Adopt-A-Bottle was launched; Binstead Primary, Christ the King Middle School, St Johns Primary and Summerfields Primary.
The distribution of the distinctive Adopt-A-Bottles has been backed up by workshops in 12 Island local authority schools. These have been presented to over 1500 pupils. The pupils have been left with an attractive fun worksheet to go over later with their teacher. Each class is left with the powerpoint presentation that the team have given, so that the teacher can go over it again at a future date.
The Footprint Trust visit schools and deliver Waterworkshops which comprise of a 50-minute workshop for each class that challenges pupils at KS2 and above – there is a shorter fun presentation for younger pupils which lasts about 10 minutes. The aim of these visits is to see every child in the school. This helps the school to become more sustainable, linked to www.eco-schools.org.uk There is no charge to the school as this work is supported by Bestival.
The Waterworkshops cover the following;
Water in the World – in other countries people don’t have enough water. Some people have water BUT it is not safe to drink. Why is this?
Water and Health – everyone (100%) in the UK has access to clean drinking water, Cuba 91%, India 84%, Turkey 81%, Pakistan 66% but Papua New Guinea only 49%. Why is this? How can we help?
Water and Wildlife – what lives in ponds, rivers and the sea? What do we know about these animals? How can we help these creatures to survive in the future?
Saving Water in the School – are taps left running or dripping, are sprinkler systems left on?
On top of that they also offer;
· A friendly chat with relevant members of staff (such as site managers and caretakers) to look for ways of reducing water use and wastage.
· A free Eco-audit can also be included as part of the visit, involving members of the School Council.
· Meet the parents: The team set up a table in the playground or hall, at the end of the school day. This is so that they can give away ‘green freebies’ to the parents along with guidance re water plus energy saving and recycling.
Eco-Audits have been carried out in seven Island schools – those being Brading, Carisbrooke, Gurnard, Barton, East Cowes, Whippingham and Brighstone. In each case, pupils from the school council or Eco-Schools committee have assisted. A report is then written by staff from the Trust and given to the school for the pupils and staff to act upon the points made.
The comments from pupils and staff have been very positive and bookings have been received from other schools following recommendations. There are already plenty of schools lined up for visits in the next academic year.
A number of schools have registered on the Adopt-A-Bottle website which the team highlight in correspondence to the school. It is also promoted in the Eco-Audits and on the website. Supportive information has been produced for teachers on the website www.footprint-trust.co.uk/sustainable-schools.html