Biodiversity and School Grounds


At Solway, we want to create an environmental haven for students, staff, parents and wildlife to enjoy.

In doing so, we empower students with responsibility, ownership and pride in their school grounds.

Bat and bird boxes painted by our students and put up around the school grounds to encourage local wildlife. 

 

Kitchen Garden

Our Kitchen Garden is a very special place for students to not only learn about our environment, but also to actively participate in creating a special environment. 

 

The Year 3/4 students plant, grow and harvest vegetables and have an opportunity to enjoy the ‘fruits of their labour’ in their cooking classes which is always a favourite!

 

Here are some drawings from the 3/4s dream kitchen garden. 

 

birds

 

In 2017 a Gardening club was established and run by our Environment Team, providing an opportunity for all students to be part of the Kitchen Garden and take responsibility for planting, weeding, watering and harvesting from our garden.

 

In 2018 we set up a number of new planter boxes that were donated by families. The planter boxes have been filled with a range of herbs and vegetables. Our Environment Team have been responsible for watering them weekly.

 

Our Green Team are very involved with the compost bins and worm farms and help classes empty their fruit scraps bins every Friday, which generates enough soil to use on our garden beds. 


 

 

Wildlife Corridor

The school has developed a Wildlife Corridor to increase our indigenous native plantings and to provide a rich habitat for our local wildlife. Students enjoy the digging, planting and mulching during the PlanetArk National Tree Planting Day each year.

 

The wildlife corridor is regularly maintained through school working bees. The planting in this area was extended in 2017 with two of the main beds being significantly extended.

 

The wildlife corridor is home to three student designed interactive signs describing the flora and fauna which can be found there.


 

Indigenous Garden

In 2018 we introduced an Indigenous Garden within our school grounds. The area is filled with plants that are Indigenous to the local area. The plants are small at the moment but we are hoping that they will grow tall and become a habitat for local fauna.

 

Schools for Wildlife

In 2021, our Green Team planted a new indigenous garden out the front of Mrs Rodda’s office, which will attract local wildlife to our school. Through applying for a grant from Boroondara Council, Ceres came into Solway over Term 2 to help us plan, plant and maintain our new Indigenous garden. 


 

Biodiversity Audit 2022

During Term 4 2022, students in the Green Team completed a Biodiversity audit of the school. They counted indigenous and introduced plants and trees, birds and animals and suggested ways to improve our biodiversity at Solway. The plants planted in the Indigenous Garden and Wildlife Corridor really helped to improve our score of 68, from the last time we audited the grounds in 2018. The addition of extras like bird and possum boxes and our worm farm also helped ensure our Biodiversity score came out above the 75 expected of a five star Resourcesmart School, with an overall score of 78. To build on this successful audit, one of the main suggestions was to try and prevent small pieces of plastic from entering the ecosystems. This inspired our apple sticker project which has stopped hundreds of stickers entering landfill, the ecosystems of the animals native to our area or even into our worm farm. The students in the Green Team also suggested continuing to redevelop the Kitchen Garden in order to ensure as much of the space as possible is used to plant new fruits, vegetables and plants to help encourage more pollinating insects into our garden.



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