Walk to school challenge Walking to school not only supports children’s

physical fitness, it significantly reduces carbon emissions outside the school as parents leave their cars at home. This means better air quality for everyone. It can be difficult to encourage children (and their parents) to walk to school each day, but Living Streets’ WOW year-round walk to school challenge is tackling the issue head on. WOW is a pupil-led scheme in which children self-report how they get to school every day using the interactive WOW Travel Tracker. If they travel sustainably by walking, cycling or riding a scooter, they are rewarded with a badge. Made from repurposed plastic materials, there are 11 themed badges designed by children from around the UK to collect throughout the year. Participating schools have, on average, increased walking rates by 23% in the first five weeks. As well as using the badges and the Travel Tracker, schools who take part in WOW also receive exclusive access to three full lesson plans linked to the curriculum and designed to instil the healthy habit of walking, while teaching important lessons on road safety and the environment. ‘The children have been very enthusiastic about the WOW challenge and they love collecting the badges. We have seen a significant increase in the number of children and families choosing not to always take the car to school and we are very proud of our achievements.’ Lucy Williamson, teacher, Abbotswood Primary School, Bristol (291 pupils)

FREE resource

Planning for trees If you are thinking about planting trees and

£2 per pupil per year

creating a wooded area at your school, the Woodland Trust has resources to help. You can apply for a free tree pack, or buy saplings from the trust. Tree Tools for Schools is an online resource to assist teachers in deciding on the number and type of trees, and also where to plant them for best results. It includes an interactive planning tool, as well as games, quizzes and printable worksheets to make lesson planning simple. The section on aftercare includes a simulation showing how the trees will grow over ten years and the management they will need each season. Everything is curriculum-linked and teachers can search by key stage or subject, making it easy to teach children about the multiple benefits trees provide for people, wildlife and the environment. ‘The children have measured and plotted features on a paper map and given this to the older children to use the tree tool planner! We have made it into a competition and the children can revise their plans before submitting them. The eco council plans to organise a press release and certificates for our planting party. We are inviting parents and hopefully doing a fundraiser.’ Sally Wolff, Grass Roots Muddy Boots Forest School, various sites across North Yorkshire

FundEd SPRING 2020 57

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