Our Years 6, 7, 8 and 9 at Moyles Court were off timetable for the day to support Fairtrade Fortnight (26th February – 11th March).
The students undertook a variety of activities and workshops designed to encourage an active and responsible attitude towards a range of global inequalities and development issues, such as poverty and interdependence.
Students were able to talk to a representative from Traidcraft to find out about the work that this organisation does to support producers in developing countries, and the difference we can make to their lives just by buying Fairtrade products.
A speaker from Oxfam talked about the work that this charity does to reduce poverty in so many countries, from providing emergency relief through to long-term aid projects to provide clean, safe water, education, improved healthcare, and much more. The students were particularly surprised to find out about so much gender inequality in different countries, as well as the environmental issue of climate change. Both speakers were very interesting and informative.
Some students had a go at making clay pots, carving wooden spoons or learning how to weave willow to make a platter – helping them to realise the skill, patience and hard work that goes into producing objects that we take for granted every day, and how easy life is for us with the machines and so many gadgets to do the hard work for us.
Other students followed the story of cotton from seed to garment – a long process involving some very poor conditions, but which Fairtrade is improving. Students then decorated their own Fairtrade cotton bags to promote this worthy cause.
It was a different day for the Year 9 students who spent the day with ‘Sunrise Bushcraft’ and found out just how hard life can be trying to survive without all of our modern conveniences. Preparing their own lunch involved gutting and filleting the fish, which was quite a challenge as nobody had attempted this before!
They had to prepare and start a fire, gathering the correct types of sticks needed and using a variety of techniques to get the fire going, and keep it going! They also had to learn how to use a knife to carve their own tent pegs.
In the afternoon, they tried their hand at shelter building – learning from their first attempt that it is important not to use dead or rotten wood as the weight of the other material on top will lead to it collapsing! Once covered thoroughly, these shelters can last for weeks. However, the students admitted they prefer their home comforts!
Mrs Sam Benham, Head of Geography and organiser of the day said: “All of these activities were great fun for a day and the students left tired and muddy, but with an appreciation of how lucky they are. We were all very grateful to the group who did some baking with Fairtrade ingredients, and with the help of the Reception class children. A very delicious treat at the end of a fantastic day – well done to everyone who took part!”