Pupils have come up with a whizz of an idea to turn an overgrown corner of their school grounds into an outdoor classroom — and help the planet stay cool.

They’ve scooped first prize in a “Let’s Go Zero” carbon emissions competition to create a sustainable educational facility at East Barnet Secondary with its own allotment and composting area.

This would create an outdoor space for hands-on learning and sustainable projects, which has been dreamed up by the school’s own ‘We Only Have One World’ environment club.

The outdoor classroom would also be a place where pupils from all year groups have some quiet time in a more relaxed outdoor setting.

The school is getting help from the IKEA home furnishings store, which ran the competition with Ashden climate solutions charity and is helping the project get off the ground, as it were.

“This is something we’re passionate about,” IKEA UK’s deputy retail boss Marsha Smith said. “Children and young people are very aware of the importance of sustainability, recycling, upcycling and reducing waste.

“This inspires hands-on, outdoor learning and resources while supporting families and enriching communities.”

The school’s prize includes Ikea products up to £2,000 for solutions and sustainable living expertise.

The ‘Let’s Go Zero’ campaign coordinated by the Ashden charity is encouraging schools like East Barnet Secondary to become zero carbon by 2030.

Teachers, nursery children, primary and secondary pupils have been submitting ideas to make their school more sustainable by reducing emissions or increasing biodiversity.

East Barnet came out on top along with three other schools and sixthform colleges in Lancashire, Huddersfield and Paisley near Glasgow — all doing their bit to fight climate change.

The campaign’s Alex Green said: “We have had an amazing response to the competition, showing the enthusiasm in school for climate action, so we’re looking forward to helping East Barnet bring their sustainable ideas to life.”

Schools play a critical role in helping Britain cut its carbon emission levels, according to the charity. They have the power to prevent 625,000 tonnes of CO2 from seeping into the atmosphere.