Craigiebarns Primary School
Our garden celebrates bees and the importance of them in nature. Throughout the year in our science lessons we have been learning about the life cycles of plants and animals as well as biodiversity and interdependence so this was a relevant theme for us. We are extremely lucky that our school has a very green and natural setting, with a lot of wildlife around. The children often find tired bees in the playground and have learned about how to help them.
Seashells and water
We, decided on a bee-friendly garden to ensure that there were always plants and flowers, e.g. Thyme, Lavender, Allium, Foxglove and Honeysuckle, that would be attractive to bees and help them survive. We also included plenty of places that they can hide and nest. Since we live in a coastal area the design represents a seaside town including shells, water and a trellis that reminded us of waves in the sea.
We have included some well known edible elements such as strawberries and the apple tree but, since we have been working a lot on challenging ourselves and trying new things in P7 we also planted a cape gooseberry and talked about how lavender can be used in cooking. Everyone tried the thyme and chives, which were new flavours for many.
We used all recycled materials to make our garden. The base was built by our school janitor, using discarded pallets from our neighbouring secondary school and we sourced everything else from our local Scrap Antics ‘Scrap Store’. As a school we have strong links with Scrap Antics through Loose Parts Play, which has been a focus for us in raising attainment in numeracy and maths, so it was great to be able to continue their work on recycling and sustainability in this way. We also received donations from families and teachers. Some of the plants were grown from seed in the school’s edible garden, which every class takes a turn at being responsible for throughout the year.
We obviously learned a lot about the life cycles of plants, their importance and how they grow, but we also learned more about team work and co-operation. Every child in the class contributed to the garden by making one of the bee or flower decorations. We are also building two other gardens from a combination of the children’s designs which did not make it to the final showcase to allow everyone to have hands on experience.
We have installed the garden in the Primary 1 playground so that we can share it, and our knowledge, with our P1 buddy class. We agreed it was a nice way to leave something meaningful behind when the children move on to secondary school after the summer.
Creating the garden – from design to reality