Green-Gold Enviroschool, Wakaaranga, Continues to Weave the Guiding Principles through School and Community.

| By Cate Jessep, Auckland Enviroschools Facilitator

Since the last reflection at Green-Gold level late in 2015, Wakaaranga School have focused on spreading the workload across the staff and now have 95% of their school deeply committed and taking responsibility for aspects of Enviroschools. In addition, the key Enviroschools teacher, Kylee Hanlon-Judd, has mentored two new neighbouring schools to aid the early stages of their own Enviroschools journey.

Wakaaranga is strengthening their commitment to deepen Māori Perspectives through a range of actions. All 200 year 2 students participate in junior kapa haka. What surprised everyone was how much these children love this opportunity to work with Whaea Nancy twice a week and how much they have gained by learning haka, poi, pūrākau stories and tī rākau games. During the sharing and decision-making day welcome, visitors were wowed by how enthusiastically and confidently they all were in both waiata and action songs.
Wakaaranga School now understands that although they have contributed to significant change towards a more sustainable school community, they would like to carry on working on strengthening connections. This will include students doing more tuakana-teina learning with their neighbouring school, Farm Cove Intermediate. Year 2 children have hard technology lessons with year 8 buddies across the field, making rat traps and Manaia. One ex-student suggested Wakaaranga could teach year 7 and 8s about why bees are important.
As a consequence of reflecting, students created a new Enviroschools vision. They want to further reduce waste, grow more bee-attracting plants now that they have the benefit of deep and thoughtful consideration of some next steps to become an even more deliberate courageous Enviroschool.

As facilitators we need to be sure that we are comfortable with an activity and are not asking others to do something that we wouldn’t, or that sets others up to fail. Here Cate runs through the experiential activity prior to the sharing and decision-making day.

The students “paddled their waka” towards a decision that they were a close fit to the Green-Gold statement and were continuing their commitment with some clear next steps identified.

Wakaaranga School Vision


Banner photo: Wakaaranga Enviroschools Journey