Knowing how important an outdoor space is for children’s health and wellbeing, and wanting to support Welsh schools , we launched a “Let’s Grow Together” design an outdoor garden space competition.
The aim was to get all pupils to take an active interest in their environment and learn about why outdoor spaces are so important for both their wellbeing and the way they learn.
This gave pupils the confidence to use their imaginations, innovation, and incorporate all their creative ideas together , and to work as a team.
We gave them some creative ideas on what to include in their gardens:
- Clever use of space – big or small areas (size doesn’t matter here)
- Seating areas and workstations – area for reading/thinking/chatting/meditating
- Recycling and upcycling – metal, wood, plastic (even using a Llaeth y Llan yogurt pot)
- Growing & sustainability – flowers, vegetables, foliage, herbs, fruit trees – you can absolutely anything in your space
- Protecting wildlife and their habitats – bugs and ladybirds, hedgehogs, birds, pond life , even chickens !
- Pollination – encouraging bees and butterflies by planting pollinator friendly plants
- Power in the environment – Solar lights, wind sculptures etc.
- Composting – the importance of reducing food waste going into landfill.
- Saving water – rainwater storage
- Incorporating storage solutions
About the Competition
To enter, pupils in both KS1 and KS2 were asked to design and draw their ideal school garden which they would like to build at their school.
We awarded a First Prize of £1500 for the best design garden, for the school to use towards building their design . We also gave two runners up £750 each to go towards their ideal school garden.
All schools who entered our competition won a Ladybird house and a Hedgehog house to feature in their school gardens.
We were delighted with the response and received some amazing entries.
It is remarkable that young children today think so conscientiously about such issues as recycling, sustainability and protecting their environment. They also recognise the importance of looking after their health and wellbeing.
Congratulations to the winning school , Ysgol Cefn Meiriadog, for their amazing school garden (pictured above) which wowed all of us here at Llaeth Y Llan. It incorporated all the features , including a story chair , solar powered water feature , and plenty of homes for bugs and wildlife.
Well done to our Runners Up , Ysgol Bontnewydd and Ysgol Llannon for their amazing school garden masterpieces.
What happened next…
Since running the competition, we have visited the winning school, Ysgol Cefn Meiriadog, and presented them with a framed print of their garden artwork which the pupils designed. It was lovely meeting the KS1 class and teachers , who were excited to show us how they were getting on with building their garden, especially their vegetable plots.