We share evidence-based K-12 learning strategies that empower you to improve education.
Our school (St.Mary's International school of Japan) Have recently made a group called going green.We would like to ask you for ideas. Our School going green by putting solar panals,using platic instead of paper,recycling paper,etc. etc.
Please give me more ideas by emaling me.
I am a sophomore in high school I am a member of a club called “Going Green” we are looking for ideas on how to go green and not break the budget. We are looking for grants that we could use for solar panels and windmills to help power our school more efficiently. If you know where I could find more information about going green or the grants please contact me.
Schools and classrooms can finally stop buying all-new supplies and resources. The easiest, and cheapest, way to go green is to shop 'used' for materials! Sprout Classrooms is a great resource for library books, book sets, resource books, technology, hands-on learning resources, etc.
There is no reason schools should have to buy new-catalogs are SO expensive, and there are so many great resources already out there. The more we support this 'used' resource, the more they can offer in the future!
Our school has styrofoam trays we use at lunch, we have approimatly 1600 students. My school says that they are recycling the trays, but they just throw them away. Biodegrable trays are 1/2 cent more than regular, where can we get a grant to pay for these?
In response to the comment above, "What are we teaching our kids?": Cleveland Metropolitan School District, Ohio, supplies breakfast and lunch to 70,000 students each day on styrofoam trays just like Los Angeles. Sadly nothing is recycled or replaced with biodegradable materials. Unfortunately large portions of their food also go in the garbage cans. The neighborhoods are littered and one of my previous student's comment was that if they cleaned it up, the garbage man wouldn't have a job! How do you begin to change the mindset of an entire city?
I am in a k-8 disrict of under 500 students. This year the going green idea is our school's goal. To implement change as you pointed out, we must start as young as possible. I was shocked by the styrofoam information you provided. Our lunch provider, for our cafeteria, serves prepared food in white styrofoam containers. We recycle in every classroom and at lunch, but I feel we can do so much more. I am curious to see what other projects are out there that can implement a change and conserve our natural resources. I would like the food contractor to stop the use of those containers for a start. Thanks for opening my eyes.
Our school is the first school in Arkansas to be a certified "Green School". We are a newly formed Math & Science Magnet School, and our Science Lab teacher, Mrs. Trotter, has done an outstanding job in coordinating this venture. I notice many mornings upon arrival at our campus that students are bringing in bags and bags of plastic bottles, soda cans, paper, and other plastic containers. We have recycling containers throughout the school, and science lab assistants gather these weekly without fail. It is inspirational to see!
We are also preparing for Earth Day in April.
There are approximately 997 students at Lockwood Avenue Elementary School just east of Vermont in a predominantly Latino neighborhood of Los Angeles. Every day the students in this overcrowded school eat their lunch in shifts before running off to play on the adjacent playground. Every one of these kids receives there lunch in a cardboard container that is sitting on top of a styrofoam (polystyrene) tray.
While the cardboard container is biodegradable, microbes have yet to evolve enough to have enzymes that will break down styrofoam. So everyday, the almost 1000 students in this school join a significant percentage of the other 745,000 students throughout LAUSD in unnecessarily filling up our diminishing landfill with avoidable non-biodegradable waste.
It was not so long ago that the Mc Donald’s corporation was made aware of the fact that they were using approximately 10% of all the styrofoam consumed in the United States to cover hamburgers that were already wrapped in paper- the average useful life for these styrofoam containers was less than 1 minute, while remaining in landfills eternally. Mc Donalds soon agreed to discontinue the use of styrofoam for this dubious purpose.
At the very least, there is a biodegradable chemical made from orange rind called limonene that can melt the styrofoam to 1/20th of its volume to significantly lessen its impact on landfill.
In the face of global warming and other environmental challenges that are making us every more aware of the finite nature of our natural resources, the deferred cost of something that is initially inexpensive like styrofoam must become part of our future citizens’ awareness. What better place to start than in elementary school?
Several years ago the Unversity of Utah implmented an enquiry-based demonstration project in 31 middle schools and high schools in Utah, Idaho and Washington. This highly successful project, which was initially funded by the EPA, is now being expanded to included a new group of science teachers and students in six western states.
Comments from several teachers whose students participatd in the demonstration project are as follows:
Terry Ekberg, Science Teacher, West High School, Salt Lake City, UT. “The student’s eyes are opened to how ‘real’ science is done in the ‘real’ world. They get experience which cannot be done just in the classroom.”
“Dr. David A. White, Science Teacher, West High School, Salt Lake City, Utah. “The research study entitled, ‘An Evaluation of the Water Quality of West High School,’ was developed and implemented by students at West High. It was directed toward assessing the water quality that enters into the culinary water system of the school, and also determine the leaching effects, if any, of some of the water pipes that inhabit school’s older buildings (some dating back to the 1920’s). This successful research project led to the creation of a new course, ‘Science Project Class.’ It capitalizes on the students’ excitement about hands-on environmental scientific research. The students’ experience and enthusiasm over their initial water quality research initiative also led to the development of a water quality research study of the streams that enter into the Jordan River. The water samples collected from local streams were compared to the water quality samples of the Jordan River; a river that begins at the north end of Utah Lake and runs north into the Great Salt Lake. The physics students in this course were given the assignment to develop a light-sensing meter to determine the density of the river’s water, including the depth to which sunlight can penetrate the water before light no longer registers on the light-sensing meter. The students also gathered samples of the river’s sediments to determine if any heavy metals were present. Such projects serve as examples of the successes that can be achieved by involving high school students in real-world project-based, environmental research activities.”
Vicki Turner, Biology and Chemistry Teacher, Juan Diego Catholic High School, Sandy, UT. “This project enhanced my curriculum and allowed me to be more effective and project oriented in achieving the goal of skills based training and the realization of the importance of mathematics in understanding the natural world. I think this is a worthwhile program, and I would like to get a group [of students] involved next year. We are offering a new class called ‘Science Research’, and this project would be ideal for that class.”
Reva Beth Russell, Biology Science Teacher, Lehi High School, Lehi, UT.) “This has been one of the most exciting things I’ve done. It has also cost me lots of extra time. If I weren’t getting some compensation for it, I might give it up. The project kept the students alive, and they kept my interest alive.”
Amy Pace, Earth Science Teacher, Wayne High School, Bicknell, UT. “I think this is a great idea. Students need to realize what real science is. It is also a great way to rejuvenate students in the spring. It has been a great learning tool for my classes, especially the writing the grant part of the project.”
Randy Stacy, AP Environmental Science Teacher, Mountain Crest High School, Hyrum, UT. “The EPA project was very valuable for our class. We strongly encourage this program be continued.”
Robert Stagg, Science Teacher and Department Chair, Quincy High School, Quincy, WA. “I thought it was a great program. It promoted real research with a realistic process of acquiring the funds to conduct it. I’m not sure how it has affected the decisions to attend college, though it did make some of them want to take an advanced high school science class that earns college credit. I think it was a great help to our staff for getting kids involved in answering their own questions, and it gave us the equipment to be able to do it in future years as well. In fact, it has spurred on a whole adoption of related research projects in almost all of our science classes. The student involvement in grant writing has also helped us win other grants that support this kind of research.”
Kathryn Randozzo, Science Teacher, East High School, Salt Lake City, UT. “I think the program was wonderful. It means a lot to these kids when their work enables them to gain an outside of the school walls experience.”
The target audience for the expanded project will include 36 secondary school science teachers per year from UT, ID, OR, WA, MT, and NV, and approximately 1,050 students per year, or 5,250 students over five years, grades 7-12.
The proposed project is designed to strengthen a student’s capacity to learn from their own experiences by providing them with opportunities to collaborate with other students in the development and implementation of out-of-the-classroom, project-based initiatives addressing real-world environmental problems in the community. A training workshop will be held at the University of Utah during August to instruct middle school and high school science teachers concerning environmental issues and the techniques of scientific research and project proposal development and implementation. The teachers will organize their students into a research team, with a PI, Co-PIs and task leaders, who will then develop a research project addressing an environmental problem in the community. The University will issue mini-grants to fund the projects, and participating teachers will receive a stipend for their participation in the program. The workshop instructors will include faculty members from the Teaching and Learning Department of the College of Education, the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, College of Engineering, the College of Mines and Earth Sciences, and several departments within the College of Science at the University of Utah, including environmental experts from the Department of Environmental Quality in several western states.
As a result of participating in the E-STEP initiative: (1) Students’ interest in science and protecting the environment will be enhanced as a result of their real-world, project-based outside of the school walls experience. (2) Their critical-thinking and problem-solving skills will be enhanced. (3) The students’ interactive communication skills will be strengthened by being able to work as a member of a research team in addressing environmental problems in collaboration with students in other schools. (4) Students will be able to apply skills learned in their Earth Science, Physics, Biology, Chemistry, Math and English classes, etc. in helping to resolve real-world, environmental problems. (5) By using the project’s interactive web site, the students will be able to access information and materials in different ways and to obtain answers to their research questions and to get help without physically having to leave their schools to meet with graduate students and research faculty at the University of Utah. Further, the interactive system will also improve efficiency for students, and teachers alike. (6) Students will learn that they can make a difference, individually, and collectively in solving and preventing environmental problems. (7) By participating in environmental research activities the students will be able to connect what they learn in school with the outside world. (8) The students’ interest in pursuing a college degree leading to a career in a scientific or engineering discipline will be greatly enhanced. (9) The E-STEP initiative will serve as the training ground for future environmentalists whose interests will be centered on protecting the environment and developing an understanding of environmental issues. (10) E-STEP will serve as a tool in helping teachers create projects and activities that encourage hands-on learning and assist in helping students achieve standards in math and science as required by the No Child Left Behind Act.
Funding from the National Sccience Foundation to implement this project in six western states is pending.
Our school is strongly committed to eco-awareness. We have an active composting program in the cafeteria, a school garden that is fertilized with the compost we manufacture, and the vegetables grown in our garden come back into the menu.
We actively recycle.
Every April we celebrate Earth Week with awareness activities such as roadside cleanup, art projects from recycled materials, displays that emphasize renewable energy and guest, including college students from environmental studies programs.