TIPS TO GO GREEN AT GRAND ERIE
How your school can GO GREEN:
- Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Compost
- Start a waste-free lunch program
- Plant trees, plant a garden
- Calculate your Carbon Footprint
- Raise butterflies
- Print double sided
- Turn off the lights, turn off the Computer Monitors when not in use, turn off computers at the end of each day
- Start an anti-idle campaign
- Start an EcoTeam or EcoClub
- Become an EcoSchool
- Hold green fundraisers
- Conduct a waste audit or an energy audit
- Walk or ride your bike to school, when possible
- Create Recycled/Waste artwork
- Organize school yard wide clean ups
- Visit a conservation park
- Send out class or school newsletter via email
- Organize Earth Hour or Earth Week activities
- Use reuseable water bottles
Ways to introduce environmental education into your classroom: (For ALL Grades)
The New Environmental Education Policy Framework is exciting to us all. However for those that have not had experience in teaching about the environment or for those of us who work in areas or with students in which we feel such a concept may be difficult to work will wonder where to start. Such educators will benefit from the following 32 simple yet impactful ideas and resources for you as a classroom teacher to introduce environmental education into the mainstream.”
1) Read Outdoors: Take your class outside to read them a story.
2) Picnic Lunch: Take your class outside for lunch (promote a literless lunch and healthy eating too!)
3) Urban Hikes: Hikes do not have to be in the woods or in the country, take your class on an urban hike. Can you still find nature in the city? Identify tree species, plants, birds and animals.
4) Planting (native) plants/trees: Learn about native trees and plant some.
5) Learn about Local Endangered Species! Investigate and research information on Canada’s endangered species. For more information, go to:www.cwf-fcf.org or www.naturecanada.ca
6) Wasteless Wednesdays: Encourage wasteless lunches within your classroom once a week or everyday.
7) Traditional Games: Take your kids outside and play classic games like leapfrog, hula hoop, tag, red light/green light, capture the flag, etc.
8) Nature Journals: Have your students keep nature journals for a whole year. Take them outside to write (or draw) in them about what they see, hear, smell or feel while outside.
9) Stewardship Opportunities: Actively seek out or plan stewardship opportunities in or around your school. For example, cleaning up your school yard or nearby trails.
10) Build a Snowman! Go outside all year long!
11) Jump in the Puddles: Let your students get wet (and dirty) with nature.
12) Tour an Apple Orchard: This could be done anytime of the year not just in the fall.
13) Read under a Tree: Take your class outside for DEAR or independent reading time. Let them find their own place in the school yard to read.
14) Solar Ovens: Build solar ovens with your class to make s’mores.
15) Habitat Inventory: Take an inventory of the different types of plants and trees that are in your yard.
16) Sundials: Make sundials with your class.
17) Fresh Air Careers: Introduce your students to possible outdoor or green jobs (forestry, landscaping, conservation authorities, etc.)
18) Math Outdoors: Venn diagrams could be easily used when introducing or discussing characteristics of flowers and trees.
19) Art: Allow students to make nature art using natural elements. Check out Andy Goldsworthy’s art!
20) Physical Education: Take your students outside for gym class and DPA.
21) Music: Take music class outside.
22) History Connections: Take your class to a local cemetery or cenotaph and research the history of your town.
23) Photography: Challenge your class to a photography scavenger hunt.
24) English: Poetry about nature, story writing, reading, etc.
25) Citizen Science: Get your class involved in citizen science programs such as: Frog Watch, Bird Study Canada, Audubon, Ice Watch, Worm Watch, etc. Check out www.naturewatch.ca
26) REDUCE, Reuse, recycle: Encourage your students to REDUCE, then reuse and lastly recycle.
27) Pledge Time Outside: Pledge to spend at least 2 periods a week outside.
28) Outdoor Classrooms: Create an outdoor classroom space for your entire school to enjoy.
29) Teacher Resources: Check out resources like: Green Teacher magazine, OSEE, COEO, etc.
30) Classroom Resources: Check out resources by: The Canadian Wildlife Federation, Space for Species, Project Wild and Project Wet.
31) Community Resources: Contact your local parks and recreations to see what they offer educational groups as far as resources or trips – i.e. tours of the green houses.
32) Newsletters: Encourage families to spend time outdoors in the evening and on weekends.
*This information was presented at the annual Ontario Society for Environmental Education (OSEE) conference on Thursday April 29th, 2010 by Rob Ridley, Field Centres Coordinator with Peel District School Board.