Last summer, the year 4 children at Prince of Wales School decided they wanted to highlight the issue of plastic in the sea. The learnt about it, wrote about it and wanted to do more. They did a local beach clean and then used the plastic litter they found in a piece of art work. That wasn't enough for them though as they wanted to spread the word. They made a music video which was viewed thousands of times. Since then our school has gone on to do a number of litter picks including one day where the whole of the school went out in to our local community and town. We have written another plastic themed song which a local sea shanty group sung for us. You can watch their videos here:
Then in the autumn term 2018, the whole school, from EYFS to Year 6, looked at how art can be used to inspire change. The work tied in with a community arts trail and exhibition focused on reducing the amount of plastic in our oceans. This ubiquitous subject matter really captured the hearts and minds of our children. Their resulting artwork was breathtaking and was celebrated by the whole community whilst on display at our local secondary school.
Children arriving at The Prince of Wales School in Dorchester on Monday 11th February 2019 were greeted by a series of unusual but inspiring sights and sounds.
Sea shanty singers (The Dorset Wrecks) were onboard a boat which had been temporarily moored in the main entrance to the school. Singing a rewrite of a famous sea shanty song, the singers asked onlookers the question, “What shall we do with all this plastic?”
Navigating past the boat, the sea shanty singers, and taking a deep dive into the main school building, children discovered that their normal classroom corridors had been transformed into a underwater wonderland. There were sea turtles, fish of all different varieties, crabs, lobsters and even jellyfish swimming around!
However, this was no paradise! Strewn throughout the ocean scene were signs of plastic waste, nets and other human activity.
Headteacher at The Prince of Wales School, Mr. Gary Spracklen explained, “Today is a launch event for a series of immersive activities for our 2019 #InspiredToLearn Science Week. Throughout the week we have a number of visitors coming into the school to share their work on the battle against single-use plastics. We also have a Science Fair and further opportunities for children to show their mastery of the Science Curriculum. At The Prince of Wales School, we are proud to support the ‘Plastic Free Dorchester Campaign’ and believe it’s important our children understand the scientific link between their actions and the future of our planet”.
Science Leader at the school, Mrs. Becci Thorpe stated, “We already do lots as a school to encourage our children to be good Eco-Citizens. We are one of only a handful of local schools to take an active part in the ‘Eco-Schools Scheme’ and we are proud of our ‘Green Flag’ school status. While events like this year’s Science Week do well to remind our community about the importance of sustainable living, it’s the everyday choices that make the difference”.
Speaking about the transformation, Year 1 Pupil Tom said, “It’s amazing! We had no idea this was going to happen this morning. You don’t expect to see a boat when you walk into school! I think it’s really important that we all reduce our use of single-use plastics. We need to look after our planet”.
Year 4 pupil Jamie added, “I couldn’t believe my eyes! It felt like we had gone scuba-diving for a school trip. I think it’s really important for every school to teach their children about the importance of looking after the environment”.
See - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LwezEKkIudo&feature=youtu.be