Glashieburn's LEAF journey
A blog post by Lindsay Shepherd
- Collaboration is key to becoming a climate literate nation
- More work to be done for a litter free Scotland
- A decade and a half of environmental legislation
- It's never too early to learn about the climate emergency
- Our strategy to inspire action for our environment
- FARE Lochend - Where good news is standard
- An Interview with Travel Influencer Chris Lawlor
- Climate action with hope and optimism
- The Big River Irvine Riverbank Clean
- Eating nettles and gazing at clouds: a LEAF reflection
- #TakeItBack to the start
- Dalry Primary School's LEAF journey
- Pedalling towards a sustainable future
- Chirnside Primary School's LEAF journey
- Flowerbank Early Childhood Centre's Pocket Garden Experience
- To keep Scotland beautiful we all need to take action
- Applegarth and Hutton’s LEAF journey
- Our hope for a nature positive Scotland
- Becoming a Platinum Carbon Literate Organisation
- Volunteering with KSB and loving every minute
- We are all accountable for our actions
- Hillhead students talk keeping Kelvingrove Park beautiful
- Making it easy to choose a reusable cup for takeaway drinks
- Get to know...John MacLennan
- Get to know...Sandy Scott
- How Eco-Schools benefits pupils, teachers and communities
- Community gardening for climate, nature and heritage in Cumbernauld
- Tackling the litter emergency to protect our wild isles
- Scotland isn't looking so beautiful. We can change that.
- Get to know... Green Flag Award Judges
- Collaboration and innovation to tackle marine litter
- An introduction to Kinnesswood in Bloom...
- The litter emergency
- Our charity faces the environmental challenges ahead with optimism
- Wrapping up 2022
- Biodiversity - Reflections on COP15
- Small steps to protect biodiversity
- Why Mountains Matter
- It’s not just bees and butterflies on your flowers
- Wet Wipes - What's the Issue?
- Young Reporters on the Route: The Launch of Running Out of Time
- Getting to know... Tom Brock OBE
- Getting to know...Kyle Usher
- A busy day for Upstream Battle education
- Planning a Wedding with the Planet in Mind
- 'Disposable' vapes and the damage they cause
- Climate Emergency Training provides positive opportunities for young people
- Making climate action possible for everyone
- Reasons to be positive
- Shotts is ACTing NOW on climate change
- Hope is a Garden
- Do we need the word 'pests' anymore?
- Beautiful Scotland judging - the truth
- Supporting Scotland to be the very greenest destination it can be
- Arbroath - working together, inspiring local climate action and improving lives
- Reflections of a beach manager
- I do like to be beside the seaside
- Climate Action Schools - helping young people take action
- Inspiring and empowering young people
- Climate Ready Classrooms at George Heriot's
- Data drives decisions
- Litter, fines and doing time
- Why our Web Developer Cameron loves being part of Team KSB
- It's only one
- Why join the family of It’s Your Neighbourhood?
- YoungScot Legacy Event
- Why it is the sea and SDG 14 for me
- Litter picking - a surprisingly fun group activity
- Climate Action Skills and positive action for all
- Seeing community groups thrive with Beautiful Scotland and It's Your Neighbourhood
- (What to do on) a dreich morning on the Firth of Clyde
- West Lothian Litter Pickers – How I got involved
- Scotland’s Climate Festival – Seed funding for community action
- Climate Ready Classrooms at St. Paul’s RC High School
- Scottish Book Trust representative joins Pocket Garden judging panel
- Have #YourSayOnLitter - we plan to...
- Everyone has something to say about litter – time to make it count
- Who ya gonna call?
- Why I pick up other people's garbage.
- Getting to Know...Colin
- Creative Careers: Spotlight on Heritage #NoWrongPath
- Celebrating Scotland’s best managed green and blue spaces
- Taking small steps towards a more sustainable future
- Caring for our planet
- Football’s Power to Combat Climate Change
- Our work on the COP26 Youth Climate Programme
- What’s litter got to do with climate change?
- Scotland’s Climate Festival kicks off in Falkirk
- Responsible Tourism – an opportunity not to be missed
- Climate Change Vlog by Dalry Primary School
- Failing our future?
- Our Week of Climate Action
- #ScotClimateWeek - our impacts and actions
- Protecting the sand and sea
- Another fine mess – part one
- Designing a lower carbon Scotland
- Getting to know... Lisa Snedden
- Combating climate change with information, education and training
- Litter picking 500 miles was always Gonna Be easy
- 7K for 7 Flags Challenge
- Littering less at St Joseph's Primary School in Glasgow
- Smashing litter picking targets during an unexpected stay in Scotland
- Keeping our communities beautiful
- Celebrating our brilliant volunteers
- Designing a pocket garden
- Getting to know... Nicola Smith
- East Haven Together
- It’s time to litter-ly turn anger into action
- Working in partnership to give communities a helping hand to clean up Scotland
- Why Beautiful Scotland is important to Lauder in Bloom
- We can all be climate ready
- Climate Ready Classrooms at Speyside High School
- Taking part in It's Your Neighbourhood
- Bags of opportunity for good
- Getting to know... Eve Keepax
- Lucky to live here
- A year of opportunity ahead
Glashieburn Primary School's Lindsay Shepherd reflects on their journey as part of our LEAF pilot, from visiting lochs to learning about habitats in the forest.
Over the last few years at Glashieburn we have been working on enhancing our outdoor learning provision across the school, in the playground and also within our courtyards for each age and stage. Before 2020, our nursery children led the way by taking part in the Wee Green Space initiative with Juliet Robertson. They visited the local forest, explored a range of activities and the Early Years team took part in training for literacy and numeracy.
Post-Covid times it has been through the interest of last session's P2 team and new members of staff that the forest has been visited again in 2022. When we learned about Keep Scotland Beautiful’s Learning about Forests (LEAF) pilot project, we jumped at the chance to further explore our previous wee green space with a focus to learn through our forest and for the children to take the lead in their own learning.
As my passion is outdoor learning, I put myself forward as the LEAF Co-Ordinator for Glashieburn. This meant that I attended four online meetings over the year with Nicola Davidson (Keep Scotland Beautiful's Education and Learning Officer) and the other pilot schools across Scotland. After our first online meeting and run through of all the aspects of the Forest Cycle, I thought even as a job share this could be manageable, particularly with our P1 classes as it gave them the chance to be little leaders in an achievable way.
The first task was to complete an Awareness Survey with our P1 classes, as the Forest Committee. This survey was very straightforward and the children took great delight in showing us their answers to statements such as, ‘I like to play outside’ or ‘I don’t like to play outside’, ‘I like to find bugs and look at them’ or ‘I don’t like to find bugs and look at them', and ‘I like to splash in puddles’ or ‘I don’t like to splash in puddles’. The answers to these questions gave us the ideal platform to establish our Action Plan and the theme of our learning for our P1 Forest Committee.
As the children didn’t seem to like bugs or be interested in being outdoors, the theme for our LEAF journey became Forest and Biodiversity. The aim has been to learn about the biodiversity in the wee green space and how we can protect it. We chose three actions to focus on:
- Learn about seasonality in the forest, looking at the trees, the bugs/insects/birds and the habitats that this space provides
- Make connections with the local residents' association to Inform and Involve the community in our learning
- Explore our curiosity further with a trip to the loch to see the ducklings and open our eyes to lifecycles and new learning environments
Our investigations and explorations were planned using the children’s ideas and interests in the forest, as well as the seasonal Wanderlust Nature Study created by Hygge in the Early Years and Glashieburn’s ongoing Hygge accreditation as a school.
Throughout the pilot project online meetings were held to start us off on our LEAF journey, at the halfway point to see how we were all getting on and to then check on our progress. These meetings all came at the perfect time to remind us to send in our Action Plans, to evaluate our journeys so far and, of course, how to apply for and finalise our LEAF award application.
There was also a live event to showcase all the pilot schools and our Forest Committee were thrilled to get a mention from Nicola during the event when our video was shown. It was so inspiring to see how each school developed their own LEAF projects depending on the age and stage that had embraced the LEAF journey and the creative ways how forests were used to enhance the learning across Scotland.
The final stage of our LEAF Award was the children’s evaluation of their learning and realising how their attitudes had changed across the year. We did this by repeating our initial survey and completing our Forest Code. This was brought together, from the children’s ideas of “a few rules for forest learning” and also recognising the skills that you need for the forest, such as “using your imagination” and “using our big muscles to run up and down the hills".
Going forward into the next school year I look forward to seeing how we can develop the Forest Committee further, this time including the whole school in deepening our love of outdoor learning within the school grounds as well as the forest and the local community.