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Monday, 24 October 2016

On Friday 21 October, we had our annal Greats and Grands Day at our school.  We are lucky that each year grandparents support our students programmes.  A lot of the grandparents attend this special day year after year.  This year during our sustainable tours led by out students, we showcased our outdoor oven, making pizzas for our visitors using ingredients straight from the garden or stored from earlier in the year's harvest.  This was a great success.  We had many grandparents saying that this day just gets better and better each year.  Some grandparents have been coming along for five years and still enjoy the experience.  What a great opportunity to enjoy our family and school community together.

Monday, 10 October 2016

It is with great excitement that our students now have their outdoor oven completed and that they have experimented with their first cooking experience.  Using tomatoes (frozen) and onions (stored) from this year's harvest, students made their first pizzas. They showed skill rolling handmade pizza bases and topping with pizza favourites and thoroughly enjoyed eating the end result.
We would like to thank Mike Nightingale for assistance in building the oven,  Brad Wade from Foster Engineering for making our flue and for the Bird and White families for their assistance in building the base. A special thanks to Grandma Sharon and Pops for all the help in preparation for our successful cooking sessions, assistance in the gardens and for guidance in our learning each week we meet with our students.

Monday, 12 September 2016

Year 3/4 Sustainable Elective - Soil and Us


Students in the Year 3/4 Sustainability Elective have been learning about the science of soil, how and why we need to care for it, and what our families can do to help out too. After learning about the layers of the soil and the importance of the compost layer at the top, students investigated what we can do in our own homes, especially with our green waste. Let's look at this learning:
Students get a closer look at what's in soil.
We can show how things we need to survive are
 connected to soil.

Making a wormery that shows layers of soil.

Recording our findings.

After our visit to Hamilton Organic, we learnt so much and we were able to answer these questions...These are our answers:
What is green waste?
* is the stuff like lawn clippings, broken off branches, twigs and organic material.  People make lots of green waste.
*  it can be food scraps too
*  when you cut overgrown things from your garden
* stuff out of your garden
* it's stuff you can turn into compost
Why shouldn't green waste go into the landfill?
*  It will make bad gases and that's bad for our air.
* Our land will also sink as things rot.
*  Green waste is the one who makes soil, so it shouldn't go into the landfill.
* Our planet will stink.
* Only people living on this planet can save our planet
* Bad gases make the environment sick.
* Would you like a city that smells and is bad for you?

How do we make green waste into compost?
*  Get your garden waste and cut it up as small as you can.
* Your food scraps can go in too.
* Leave it for awhile but turn it so the air goes into it.
* Cover it with a bit of old carpet to keep it warm for the bacteria.
* Keep turning it.
* Try and keep weed seeds out of the the compost.
What types of compost bins are there?
 * You can buy a big black plastic bin but you can make your own too out of left over wood.

Part of their learning was a visit to Hamilton Organic to learn first hand how green waste can be recycled into compost that is great for our gardens.  Find out more about Hamilton Organic -

Hukanui Students are doing their math - 

Monday, 8 August 2016

The students in the Year 5/6 Sustainable Elective have been learning about our wastewater system and the effects this can have on the environment.  One of our classes found and interesting Journal article called 'Up the Pipe'.  This article really got the students thinking, especially when the author noted that people are very good at recycling their containers but they don't always think about what was in the container and how it effects the environment when it enters our wastewater.  Our students found a list of chemicals that are harmful to the environment if they get in our soils and then into the waterways.  To develop their understanding and increase their pool of knowledge, students have learnt about the wastewater process, the concept of sludge, that sludge ends up in the landfill, landfills sometimes leach into our soils and their into the waterway and chemicals that are harmful to the environment.  Many of the collected containers had ingredients that were harmful.  The students first action is to explore making their own 'green cleaning' products and to test their effectiveness.  The learning and experimenting continues.

Thursday, 28 July 2016

Another Great Start to a New Term

 Another term is underway.  Our students continue to take action and responsibility for their school and home environments while have fun and enjoying team building opportunities. The Backyard Garden Group have been busy preparing gardens for spring, planting native trees in the school gully and eating food harvested from the garden, prepared and enjoyed.  Our outdoor oven is complete, so we can continue to utilise the 'garden to table concept'.  We are very grateful for the support we get from our school and local community.