Longdean School which is based in Hemel Hempstead in Hertfordshire, received funding in CPL Group’s first round to use towards the construction of a large wildlife pond to support their students in learning about the natural environment.
The school had already completed the first phase of the project when they applied for funding for the next stage of development. The funding was used to bring the pond to life with the final important features such as landscaping, placing stones to create a shelf, basin and small reef, together with the planting of oxygenating and native pond plants.
A cheque was presented to Longdean School for £7,500 and Tracy Doyle the school’s Finance Director said:
Creating a wildlife pond is a project we have been working on for over a year. Our aim is to provide a haven both for insects and amphibians and for our students to get out of doors and engage with the natural environment. This grant from CPL Group has come at just the right time, allowing us to create a reef, edging stones and planting so that the pond can come alive.”
Helping to bring learning to life
The pond and surrounding area are enclosed by a fence with a padlocked gate making it safe on the school premises. Inside the area a platform has been built which enables students to get close to the pond. The facility is used for teaching and learning: science, geography and art, whilst boosting motivation, performance and wellbeing.
Since the pond was completed Longdean students have planted trees from the Woodland Trust within the area and around the school grounds. There are future plans to install a shelter when funding is available to enable education to take place in nearly all elements, helping to bring learning to life beyond textbooks.
There are also plans to setup an eco/conservation group so that those students with a keen interest can be even more involved via extra-curricular activities in addition to lessons.
I love the idea of making an enclosure with the pond on school grounds. I think it’s great we can make these small, starting steps to use our land to support wildlife. I’m looking forward to actually see the project develop and grow day by day into something amazing!”
Spriha, Year 12 who is keen to join an eco / conservation group
I enjoyed learning about the trees. I learnt the condititions that they need to grow well. I am looking forward to seeing them grow over the next few years.”
Roman, Year 7 who was involved in the tree planting at the pond
I learnt how simple it is to plant them. I am looking forward to having some beautiful trees to look at as I walk into school.”
Isabel, Year 7 who was involved with the tree planting at the pond
I thought I was lucky and privileged to take part in this project. I found it interesting as I got to find out loads of things I never knew about trees. I also learnt how trees are planted and why they are planted the way they are. This was such a good experience and I hope to do it again.”
Desmond, Year 10 who was involved in the tree planting at the pond
Darren Lowe, Managing Director at CPL Group said:
A large motivator for all employees of CPL Group is to play a role in supporting our customers to enhance teaching and learning. This project is one of many which has been made possible through grant funding from CPL Group. I am delighted to see the results and read the positive testimonials from the pupils, who will benefit from the learning resource for years to come.”