Ms. Newton’s grade 5 class at Begbie View Elementary has been on a year long Waste Eco-Challenge! Here are some of the things that have been happening in her classroom:
LEVEL 1- COMMUNICATE CLASSROOM WASTE POLICY
Ms. Newton asks parents to not send processed food for snacks and lunches: for health and environmental reasons. This includes juice boxes. She also models and speaks aloud how she is wasting less, ie. Double sided photocopying, using loose leaf instead of Xeroxing (loose leaf is from recycled paper and is lighter weight), not gift wrapping, reusing materials, etc.
LEVEL 2- DEVELOP CLASSROOM HABITS
- Students sort all their garbage including compost, paper and plastics.
- Students use re-used fabric to clean our plastic covered drill sheets.
- Students use fabric towels instead of paper to dry hands. Ms. Newton washes and dries these at home.
- Classroom has one garbage instead of two
- Copying less- use loose leaf, double side, 4 copies per page
- Current Challenge is zip lock bags. Many students in all grades use ziplock bags on a daily basis. Ms. Newton’s class collects, washes, and reuses them.
LEVEL 3- EDUCATE OTHERS
When Ms. Newtons students see someone litter on the playground they are empowered to say “hey you dropped something, please pick it up.” If the student does so, we leave it at that. If they ignore Ms. Newton student’s request, the student tells Ms. Newton what they were littering, when and where. Ms. Newton then approaches the student, with their teacher about how other students don’t appreciate littering, and then they are given a bag to pick up litter outside. Students educating other students has been successful at cutting down the amount of litter on the playground, the first progress at really improving the litter situation at Begbie View Elementary. Students are realizing that it isn’t just staff who don’t want them to litter, it is their fellow students.