New School Canterbury – Inspiring hope for the future through growing trees
The new year is a time of new beginnings, new aspirations and new hope for the future. In February, New School Canterbury in partnership with the Earth Restoration Service will be launching an inspiring project that will encourage children in schools across the UK to plant trees. Each school will care for 100 saplings for the first two years of their lives, before gifting them to the local communities to become orchards and woodlands.
This exciting new project is part of the school’s wider commitment to nurturing a connection with environmental and ecological awareness. “We are passionate about encouraging children to care for the planet out of love and respect rather than fear of what might otherwise happen if they don’t.” Beth Cuenco – Headteacher
A number of reports from employers and research organisations are highlighting that in many ways, schools are failing to develop young people with the skills that they will need to succeed in this fast-changing world. To address the complex global issues that our children will inherit, they will need skills such as resilience, creativity, flexibility, and situational awareness, alongside values such kindness, empathy and respect.
New School Canterbury opened its doors in September 2019, and is passionate about offering an education for contemporary times through developing such skills and values.
Children at New School Canterbury take part in land care and environmental awareness classes helping to develop a deep understanding of nature and a love for the world in which we live. Through these lessons the children are creating an eco-garden, learning about rainwater harvesting, organic growing, permaculture, foraging and caring for wildlife and bees. They are also working with experts in the field to integrate circular economy thinking to reduce waste across the whole site.
Funding from the local council has also enabled New School to develop an intergenerational project that brings older retired people at risk of social isolation to the site as volunteers, to work with the children in the garden, breaking down barriers between generations.
New School Canterbury offers education for children between the ages of 3 and 11 and aims to inspire a love of learning and to have each child’s wellbeing at its heart.
The Kindergarten welcomes children between the ages of 3 and 6 and provides an environment where childhood is valued, imagination nurtured and education unhurried, developing creative and confident learners who are ready and eager to take their first steps into school life at the age of six.
A weekly Parent & Baby Group and a twice weekly Outdoor Parent & Toddler group, both provide a wonderful opportunity for families to get a taste of the gentle approach that is integral to the education throughout the school.