Ysgol Gynradd Creigiau Primary School makes a splash with ‘Water Challenge' win

Pupils from Ysgol Gynradd Creigiau Primary School have scooped first prize in the Pupil Voice Water Challenge for their ideas to promote water consumption in school.

The challenge, set by the Cardiff Healthy Schools Team, encouraged primary school councils and pupil voice groups to come up with ideas to increase the amount of water pupils are drinking during the school day.

Each pupil at the school was presented with a water bottle to commemorate the win by Cardiff Blues rugby player Rhys Gill during a special school assembly.

The prize giving comes as National Nutrition and Hydration Week commences (March 11th- 15th) which aims tohighlight, promote and celebrate improvements in the provision of nutrition and hydration locally, nationally and globally.

Children at the school were commended for the data they gathered through a pupil and teacher survey which found if pupils were drinking water during the day. They found out that peers were not aware of how much they should be drinking and also highlighted possible concerns from teachers.

Changes implemented by the school have included:

-         All classes provided with a water station to be kept in the classroom and taken onto the yard during break times.

-         All classes to learn about the importance of drinking water.

-         Pupil rewards for refilling water bottles.

-         Providing teachers with a fact sheet to say how much water the pupils should be drinking and why.

Cabinet Member for Education, Employment and Skills, Councillor Sarah Merry said: "This is an excellent example of how listening to the ideas of children and encouraging them to problem-solve, can help improve their daily school lives and environments. 

After six weeks another survey was carried out which identified which classes have made the biggest improvements and the overall amount of water consumed across the school had increased.

Head teacher Mrs Delyth Kirkman said: "We know the importance of drinking water but children can often get distracted during activity and forget to drink regularly.

"This project was engaging for the whole school, some classes took part in fun activities to encourage drinking more water such as singing songs, designing posters and class competitions.

"Pupils who drank the most water became ‘Water Champions' and drinking water at playtime was encouraged by making water stations that could also be taken outside.

"This was a great way to highlight the importance of water consumption to our health and wellbeing and encourages our children to think about how much they are drinking throughout the day.

"Thank you to Rhys for attending our assembly, it was an exciting day for the whole school."

Councillor Merry added: "Cardiff Council is committed to being a Child Friendly City where the voices and rights of children are an integral part of public policies, programmes and decisions."