For my CAS project, I was inspired by my love of plants and interest in addressing wellbeing in school. I noticed that in the old biology labs, where potted plants covered every window sill, it had an atmosphere that was more positive in some indescribable way. Perhaps the rooms felt less artificial and grey. Me and my group then did some research into the effects of indoor plants on mental health and found that plants were shown to create a more conducive environment for work and study. Additionally, in my own experience I found that caring for a plant and seeing it grow was a good stress reliever and gave me something to focus on other than work. I would urge students to consider the benefits of looking after house plants in their work areas during this term’s lockdown.
The plan we came up with was to introduce a couple of potted plants into form rooms so that the boys in the form could take care of them. We decided to start with Removes forms and are now exploring the possibility of expanding the initiative to other years if the project was deemed to be successful. Thankfully, the project was very successful. Removes forms were excited to get the plants and showed an interest in keeping the plants watered well and healthy. While we were doing the project, various form tutors from different years and other teachers expressed an interest in obtaining a plant for their rooms, and the enthusiasm they showed suggests that an expansion of the project would be promising. An idea we now have to facilitate this expansion is to provide forms with the plants and drainage tray once they have raised the necessary small fee, with each member of a form only needing to give around 50-75p.
My hope is that even after I leave, the trend of having plants in classrooms continues to increase and in the future the school will become filled with plants for all to enjoy.