The power of collaborative learning

#CleanfortheQueen @sthildasbushey @Melanie_Char3 

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St Hilda’s, alongside other schools in Hertsmere, took part in the ‘Clean for the Queen’ initiative the week commencing Monday 29th February 2016 in celebration of the Queen’s 90th birthday.


A few months ago, an email came through informing me of the ‘Clean for the Queen’ campaign that was being launched to tidy up Britain in time for the Queen’s 90th birthday.

Although I do love a good British tea party, I was so pleased to discover that there was the opportunity for the girls to be actively involved in giving something back to the community in preparing for her Majesty’s special birthday.

Anyone driving through Bushey on the Monday afternoon could not have missed the Upper School walking to King George’s Park in hi-vis jackets, litter picking gloves, and their own  tiara or crown design which they had been busy making at 16the weekend. With litter pickers and bin bags in hand, the girls set to work straight away, determined to clear their designated area in the short time slot they were allocated. For what is a very well kept and tidy park, the children did an excellent job of filling the purple ‘Clean for the Queen’ sacks and managed to surprise themselves at how much they were able to find.

Meanwhile, the Lower School were busy back at St Hilda’s litter picking around the school grounds, washing playtime equipment and polishing key dusty areas indoors. Again, hi-vis jackets, gloves, tiaras and crowns were worn with pride, and the school was left sparkling. Luckily the weather was pleasant too!

There was a positive buzz as I walked around both events. I observed the girls working as a team, determined to give it their all. Working in small groups, there was plenty of equipment for everyone to be involved, and to feel they had all made an important contribution in tidying the local area for the Queen’s birthday.

St Hilda’s thoroughly enjoyed being part of such a special event. I always say every day is a new experience in teaching; it is certainly not very often that we find ourselves litter picking in a tiara!


We were delighted to hear a few weeks after the event that we were the winners of the School Clean Up and the Tiara/Crown competition, and that the Mayor would be visiting St Hilda’s to present us with our prize. Our Eco Reps  are now very busy thinking of how our prize could be used to improve the school environment.

Happy Birthday Elizabeth! We hope we made you proud!


Melanie Charles, Form 2 Teacher,  St Hilda’s School


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