News and Events

Earthwise funding sweetens Impact Inquiry

June 23, 2022

Spotswood in the spotlight

At Spotswood College sustainability is not just something we run alongside our curriculum, it’s embedded into our curriculum every week. Our Impact Inquiry is based on the global sustainability goals and is scaffolded to enable students to undertake their own project in response to their research on the global goals.

Panels showcasing some of the impact inquiry projects.

In 2021 we had a number of outstanding projects run entirely by students. These included cheesemaking, mushroom farming, an orchard, robotics, upcycled and reposed product design and production, food production, market gardening and social campaigning.

As part of this programme 3 students proposed an apiary for the school farm that could be used as a resource for the creation of naturopathy products. We already had students creating nature products such as spawa, shampoo, soaps, toothpaste, body balms and healing comfrey balms. The naturopathy students were noticing healing properties of beeswax as well as it being a nice smelling ingredient to incorporate their product design.


Apiary Inquiry board and products.

Sweet success.










This led to a decision to apply for the Earthwise grant to support the set up our own Apiary. The apiary would not only provide raw ingredients and products for health and food Impact Inquiries but was seen as a fantastic opportunity for students to learn about beekeeping – a booming business here in Taranaki.

Setting up the hives. Fences and gate completed.

The 3 students working on establishing the Apiary spent a lot of time designing the garden where the Apiary is situated. They made contact with a local beekeeper and have created a powerful community partnership with the beekeeper/supplier. The students then built and installed the hives and researched and planted out the space around them for year-round, happy healthy bees. Alongside this learning, they designed the packaging and logo for the honey product.

Specific use of the funds.

  • Building the fencing and gates for the Apiary
  • The hives boxes
  • Beekeeping tools
  • 5 beekeeping suits and PPE
  • A large honey extractor
  • Extraction tools and buckets and equipment
  • Mite control
  • The bee Nuc
  • One Queen

All set and safe.

Our work has been showcased through on a number of platforms including:

The Enviroschools story about our Designery

You can read an article from the Education gazette pp 48-53: Ed Gazette 2021 100.10 ISSUU (1)


Beekeeping showcased.

Beautifully presented bee products.

Bee calm Tommy Balms.