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Manor Park Primary School

School lights the way for Earth Hour

An Isle of Man school is marking Earth Hour (24th March) in a unique way – by turning used plastic milk cartons into lanterns.

Pupils and parents at Manor Park Primary School in Douglas are decorating cartons with tissue paper and cut-out polar bears, to highlight the plight of the endangered animal, then adding battery operated tea lights.

The initiative is part of the school's Inspire programme, which involves parents in learning, and forms part of the Global Learning Programme the school is signed up to.

On the last day of the spring term (23rd March), pupils and parents will hold an event at the school where all the lanterns will be illuminated.

Then, at home the following evening at 8.30pm, pupils will light their lanterns as the world goes dark for Earth Hour, organised by the WWF to raise awareness of environmental issues.

Manor Park is a partner of UNESCO Biosphere Isle of Man.

Deputy headteacher Sonya Kneen said: 'The whole school is involved in collecting milk cartons and creating unique, individual lanterns from them.

'This complements work we are doing right across the curriculum. For example, in science we are looking at how animals are adapting to environmental changes and our book corner has an 'Under Water' theme.'

The last day of term will also see pupils carry out a litter pick in their school grounds. Parents, pupils and staff will, the following day, take part in a wider, Beach Buddies-organised, Love Where You Live clean-up of the community.

Geoffrey Boot MHK said: 'It is great that the entire school is working to raise awareness of global environment issues and doing its bit to keep the Island, and its immediate area, a special place for people and nature in line with our Biosphere pledge.'

Findlay Macleod, Managing Director of Isle of Man Creamery – a partner of UNESCO Biosphere Isle of Man – said: 'It's fantastic to see the children from Manor Park School recycling milk cartons for such a good cause.

'We are very mindful of the impact our business has on the environment through our packaging and are currently looking at new and innovative plant-based cartons for our milk. These new cartons will be entirely sustainable, recyclable and will actually remove carbon from the environment during production.'

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