Learning for Sustainability at Vardon Primary

By Te Rangimaire and Anthony, Room 15, Vardon Primary

In Term 2 the whole of Tui Team where shocked at the world headlines about the amount of plastic discovered on Henderson Island – an uninhabited island in the Pitcairn Island group. It was assumed that there was more than 3 million pieces of rubbish that was on the island, and most of it was under the sand. It really harmed some of the sea creatures and the animals that live around and on Henderson Island. Room 15 looked on the internet so we could find something to reduce the amount of rubbish found in/on Henderson Island. We struggled to find something because we are a small school. How could the changes we make ultimately change what is happening on Henderson Island?

We decided to look at our own backyard and see if we could make a difference in our school, so we did a waste audit with the school wheelie bins to see how bad our own recycling issues were. We found heaps of rubbish, particularly soft plastic lunch wrap that we weren’t sure how to recycle. We decided to do some research and see if there was a solution to this issue. That’s when we discovered Bee’s Wrap. Bee’s Wrap is a reusable and washable wrap. We made this substance with beeswax that can replace plastic wrap. We found that you could purchase 3 beeswax wrap online for $30 (that is a lot of money to pay), so we started researching on how to make DIY Bee’s Wrap.

We completed some surveys around the school about Bee’s wrap. We found that most people didn’t know what it was however they were willing to try it if it was being sold at the right price.

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We wrote reports that were shared with the school community explaining what our Bee’s Wrap was and why it was using it could be so beneficial to our environment. We also decided to create some posters and tags to advertise our Bee’s Wrap. We researched the ingredients and found the cheapest prices online.

Our teacher trialled the mixture first because some of the recipes were quite different. The ingredients were: 1 teaspoon of ground pine resin, 100% cotton 35×35 centimeters in length, some beeswax (about 2 and a half teaspoons or a handful), approximately 1 teaspoon of  almond oil.

We grated the beeswax because pellet beeswax was not available.

Once we got all the ingredients we started making the Bee’s Wrap.

The recipe is:

1.Wash your hands

2.Preheat the oven to 110 degrees celsius

3.Put baking paper on a tray

4.Lay 1 piece of fabric on the tray. Make sure you have pre-cut the edges of the fabric with pinking shears so they do not fray. Add beeswax mixed with pine resin. Lightly scatter across the whole piece of material.

5.Put in the oven for 5-10 minutes

6.Pull out of oven and use a paintbrush to spread out pine resin and beeswax.

7.Dip brush into almond oil and apply a lite layer

8.Place back in the oven for 2-3 minutes

9.Take out of oven for 15 seconds and air dry by waving it around. Then you have made Bee’s Wrap.

Room 15 are still in the process of making this amazing product. The prices will be 2 for $5.00 or 1 for $3.00. When we finish making them they will be on sale during Term 4 in our school community. We haven’t yet decided what we will be spending our profits on. After we have sold out Bee’s Wrap, we may complete another waste audit and see if they have made much difference to our soft plastic results.

News Flash: Room 15 sold out all of it’s bees wrap, the first day it went on sale!

If you are interested in making your own Bees Wrap – this is where we purchased our materials from:

The  Fine Ground Powdered Pine Rosin/Resin was purchased from: https://www.etsy.com/

The beeswax blocks were purchased from:

https://www.beesrus.co.nz/shop/Beeswax.html

https://www.mossopshoney.co.nz/shop/Beeswax.html

We used the blocks but the pellets would have been better as we spent a lot of time grating the wax down to smaller pieces.

The almond oil was purchased from:

http://www.healthpost.co.nz/ BUT you can also buy it at most supermarkets.

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