Pupils in England, France, Poland and Spain have been working on a joint project designed to raise awareness about protecting the marine environment.
Called AWARE it stands for Around the World – A Race for the Environment.
The theme is sustainable development with each school working on one aspect of the marine environment near to their location.
The pupils at Alverstoke Junior School have made a life size King Neptune out of rubbish collected at Stokes Bay, prepared and analysed an online survey of local yachtsmen.
They have also written speeches expressing their concerns about destruction to the marine environment.
Pupils from the partner schools visited Alverstoke last summer and, in November, 29 Year 5 Alverstoke pupils travelled to Les Sables d’Olonne for the start of the Vendee Globe Round the World Yacht Race. As well as presenting their charter to all of the 20 competing skippers, they were invited on board Gamesa and Hugo Boss by local skippers Mike Golding and Alex Thomson.
During the course of the race, Mike Golding answered questions each week and both skippers have visited the school.
The final element of the project commences in early June, when 15 Year 5 pupils fly out to Poland and travel across the country by train, to spend time working alongside pupils from the partner schools.
During the week the pupils from Alverstoke will explore one of Poland’s oldest national parks, visit the habitats of beaver colonies and spend time experiencing the culture of the city of Krakow.
A great deal of preparation has been taking place in school, prior to the visit.
The group of pupils have all been attending weekly after-school Polish lessons, learning the basics of the language, as well as sampling typical Polish food and singing traditional songs.
They have also been busy preparing their own English lessons ready to teach to some of the Polish pupils when they visit the school in Poland.
There will be a ‘celebration of culture’ during the week, to which residents of the town are be invited and so pupils have been busy rehearsing typical English songs and country dancing routines.
There is no doubt that this will be an incredibly exciting and memorable visit for all involved and pupils are already looking forward to sharing their experiences with the rest of the school.