From the lovely indigenous grounds, medicinal and vegetable garden to the anti-waste activities and recycling initiatives, Glenridge helps our children understand our environment: how it affects us and our responsibility towards it.
Glenridge children are very proud of the vegetable garden. It has been part of school life since it was built in 2004. Its cement walls bear witness to this happy event with the hand or footprints of every child from that year firmly imprinted on it.
Planting and caring for the garden (under the guidance of Wendy Groom the gardening club teacher) has always been part of the curriculum, teaching respect for growing things. Growing, preparing and then eating “the fruits of their labour” at snack-time is a perfect way for children to learn about nutrition and to appreciate delicious, wholesome food and understand where it comes from.
A water tank means we can now collect rain for the garden and the vegetables are growing very well. When harvest time comes, a regular “Glenridge farmer’s market” will give parents and staff an opportunity to buy our fresh produce. The proceeds will be saved to purchase materials to extend our garden and add on a medicinal plants section as well as a sensory garden.
Recycling and anti-waste
Tuesday is anti-waste day and the big wooden box overflows with recyclable goods brought in from children’s homes. We have a volunteer parent who sorts out the anti-waste and carefully stores it in relevant compartments in the anti-waste station.
Enthusiastic young sculptors can then recycle suitable items (small cardboard boxes, yoghurt cartons, egg boxes, toilet rolls – to name a few) into impressive installation art pieces.
Everyday objects are given new life and children value the beauty and usefulness of “waste” items – an important awareness in our ‘throw-away’ society. This activity is also useful to initiate discussions about litter and waste and its effects on the environment.
Supervised hammering and bashing also provides enormous delight. When wood off-cuts are donated to the school the children recycle them – once again – into grand sculptures during vigorous woodwork sessions.
Glenridge plays an important part in encouraging and facilitating recycling within the school community through the following initiatives:
- A “Green Office” bin is provided for used printer cartridges
- There is the Mpact bin situated in the Glenridge parking lot for waste cardboard and paper .
- There is an organic kitchen waste receptacle so we can feed the worms and make compost for our vegetable garden
- We also have three wheely bins which parents and community members use to collect recyclable cans, plastic and glass
How better to teach our children social responsibility than by setting a good example?
“We do recycling at Glenridge so that the world can’t stink and we can make new stuff” Quote from child about anti-waste (Sisekelo Nzimakwe)