Students are Making and Doing Their Bit for the Environment
Junior Sprouts is an eco-friendly co-curricular group, open to students in Years 5 and 6. The group has a focus on environmental sustainability and recycling. This group is a stepping-stone into the Eco Sisters co-curricular, which runs for Years 7 – 12 students.
Our aim is to empower our younger students and instil in them the belief that they can make a difference to our world and the environment through innovative and simple, everyday changes.
Students who participate in this co-curricular option get a choice of being part of one of two group types – Doing and Making.
The ‘doing’ group focuses on what they can put into place to encourage sustainability around the College and at home. They follow a process of:
- developing, and
First, they brainstorm issues around the school or at home that need attention. Then, they pick an issue to focus on and research to see the damage this issue causes. They also look at current products and practices that can eradicate or manage this issue.
After that, the group develops a plan of how the school or community can implement their suggested products or changes. These include looking at the costs, benefits, possible problems and then the marketing ideas.
Finally, they take their proposal to someone who can make the big decisions, like Mrs Oaten. This then provides them with feedback on their current idea and a list of further questions to look into so they can continue the process.
Some ideas the Junior Sprouts have put forward in the past is a College water tank and a College chicken coop.
This group’s focus is on designing and creating items that are recycled or upcycled, eco-friendly and sustainable. These products are then sold at College events such as Mercy Day and Outreach Day.
Students put a lot of work into thinking of products that do not require them to purchase anything new but fills an eco-need in the community. Some products made so far have been:
- beeswax wraps
- shopping tote bags made from old t-shirts
- plants in decorated pots planted through propagation
- dog toys from old clothes which were then donated to local rescue shelters
Here is some feedback from the girls:
My group decided to put together a proposal for a water tank. It will save the school a lot of water and money, especially in the wetter seasons. We even thought of a place for it to go that would catch the most rainfall. It was really difficult trying to organise everything and get the resources needed to build it. I enjoyed it though, especially knowing it was for a good cause. Elizabeth Harris, Year 6
I like how much we get to socialise with the other Year groups, and we can put our ideas together to come up with eco-friendly items. On the days when we get to sell our products, it feels really good so see how many people are buying eco-friendly items. It also helps us improve our financial literacy and maths skills, which is a bonus. Elizabeth Kane, Year 6
I’ve learnt more about not using too much plastic and getting more plants into the environment. Our products didn’t have many parts to them that weren’t eco-friendly. We tried to recycle things instead of buying brand new and the plastic we used we recycled afterwards. Junior Sprouts is so much fun and I also get to meet new people. Siobhan Hanbidge Year 5