Civil engineering company Colas welcomed students to work on their site in Rowfant to create a Green-space project.
The students in Year 7 were set the challenge by the company to come up with designs for scarecrows made out of recyclable materials, which would be used to protect Colas Green-space allotment crops.
They used their talents to create entries, and the finalists in the competition took part in building the top four scarecrow designs with the help of Colas staff.
The pupils from Thomas Bennett Community College in Crawley were also planting up seedlings of fruits, vegetables and flowers.
It is hoped they will return later this term to harvest them to use in their food studies lessons back at their school.
At the end of the day one student said: “It was great to learn real skills and to work alongside people from Colas.
“We had fun but we also learned a lot about how to plant and care for the Green-space.”
Another said: “‘I really enjoyed sowing the seeds and planting because when we were doing it I found out a lot about the company and I found it interesting’.
“Building the scarecrow was the best thing, because we used our imagination.”
Carole Lawless, director of Personal, Social, Citizenship and Health Education (PSCHE) at the college saw how much they all enjoyed it.
She said: “The students had a fantastic time and felt that they were learning ‘real skills’ in an exciting and fun way. They really enjoyed the opportunity to talk to Colas staff about their roles and jobs - they said it gave them a clearer idea about the range of careers a company like Colas can offer.
“They thought the whole day was fabulous and are keen to visit again to see more of what Colas do.”
The day was part of Colas’ ‘Give & Gain’ initiative run by Business in the Community. This year’s event on May 15 saw thousands of people volunteering. To find out more go to www.bitc.org.uk/programmes/give-gain-day