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The grade 1 students at William G. Davis Public School created a garden in the front yard of their school. Ms. Cardoso’s class spent a lot of time preparing their a school garden, and started out by reading books such as “The Giving Tree” and “The Lorax” to learn more about the harmful effects humans have on the environment, and how to make changes towards a more sustainable future. The class did a front yard cleanup in order to clear the yard for a garden. They got rid of waste, including snack wrappers, water bottles, and even old clothing! They integrated their garden project into their classroom lessons not only by reading about the environment, but by doing math activities on their garden, and learning more about plants and choosing which ones they would plant in the school garden. They made posters to teach their friends and family about how to help keep the Earth clean through acts such as community clean ups and gardening. Their posters attracted a lot of attention, and many parents and community members volunteered to help William G. Davis students plant their garden. High School students in the Landscaping class at Sir Oliver Mowat Collegiate Institute even helped the grade ones plant trees and plants. To extend the learning, the grade one class was invited to Sir Oliver Mowat high school to see their living garden wall. The two groups even planned a nature walk, and will continue to work together on their garden projects! This great learning partnership is growing due to a shared interest in the environment, and the grade 1 students at William G. Davis Public School have a beautiful garden to share with the rest of their school and community!
In conjunction with Global Issues Citizenship and Sustainability, a course offered in grade 12, Warren Collegiate was able to begin the process of starting a school bicycle repair program. The students learned about other community bike shops that promote the bicycle as a vehicle for social change. They also learned about sustainability, recycling and promoting active transport in an effort to improve fitness and reduce carbon emissions. We attended a two day workshop to learn the basics of bike repair in Winnipeg and then put our skills to use here in the community. Gently used bicycles, for children and youth were repaired, recycled and donated to local community groups and individuals in need. We volunteered a day at nearby Camp Douglas in Woodlands and offered our assistance to repair camp bicycles and donated our refurbished bikes for the camp to use. Other events will include a group ride up the Meridian Trail and partnering with elementary schools to promote bicycle safety and maintenance. Students learned the benefits of volunteerism and mentoring by working with younger students to pass on their skills.
The grade four class at the Fort McMurray Islamic School started a paper recycling program to reduce the amount of paper that ends up in landfill. The students took the initative to start the first school wide recycling collection program. Their recycling program consists of placing recycling bins throughout the entire school, and educating students and staff on paper recycling. Each week, the class collects the recycled paper, weighs it, and recycles it at a local depot. They keep track of the amount of waste that each class has recycled on a large spreadsheet. The classroom that recycles the most amount of paper each year gets to have a party in their honour! The Fort McMurray Islamic School recycling program is a great way to encourage whole-school participation of diverting waste from landfills, and helping the planet!
The Green team of St. Mary’s Academy started a composting campaign at their school in order to divert organic waste from landfills, and educate their peers on the importance of proper waste sorting. The Green team placed composters around the school with educational signs to illustrate what can and cannot be composted. They also set up a large garbage sorting area in the cafeteria to educate students on property disposing of all waste. The composting area includes one large composter, a liquid waste bucket, a large recycling container, a can recycling box, and a garbage bin. The Green Team did presentations and announcements to encourage the student body to reduce, recycle, and compost. Since the start of their campaign, the Green Team has collected an average of 63.4lbs of compostables each day! This has had a significant (58%) reduction on the amount of garbage that the St. Mary’s students average each day. The composting project has been a huge success with students, so much so that the staff at St. Mary’s Academy is composting too!