What is an EcoChallenge?
An EcoChallenge is a hands on project that allows students to take action at home or in the school and make a difference.
What type of projects are available?
The EcoChallenge resources listed on the BR website offers many options for exciting projects you can do with your students or you can choose to design your own.
Can I create my own project?
Absolutely! All projects must align with an EcoFootprint category (waste, energy, water, transportation, food) and have some sort of measurable outcome. Do you or your students have an idea that you are passionate about? That may work! It’s up to you!
Do I have to do all 5?
You can if you want to. We have also seen many schools be very successful in taking on one project and working on it throughout the year.
What have other schools done?
Visit beyondrecycling.ca/ecochallenge to read about some of the success stories from other BR classes that took the EcoChallenge.
What do I measure?
All our EcoChallenge projects need some sort of measurable data so that we can report back to our funders about the amazing things that we are doing with their money. They want to see how much waste we reduced, how much energy and water we saved and more. Not sure how to do those calculations? No problem, that is what your BR Educator is for. Just ask!
What if I need help?
Your BR Educator is there to help you throughout your entire EcoChallenge journey. Each BR Lesson is 75-minutes long, with most lessons having a dedicated 15-minutes to help support your EcoChallenge project. Talk about what you are excited about doing and let them know how they can help.
How do I enter?
All classrooms participating with the Beyond Recycling program are eligible to enter. In order for an EcoChallenge to be considered complete, the teacher must log into their BR account and report their project and data. Want to be prepared to collect all the information you need? Preview the Entry Checklist to make sure you collect all the info you need.
When does it take place?
The Beyond Recycling program addresses each EcoFootprint category with specific lessons throughout the length of the BR program. We have found that it works well to introduce the individual EcoChallenge projects at the same time as the related lesson. but you could also choose to do one large project can be built up throughout the whole program. The EcoChallenge happens from October 1st to June 1st each year. Review the EcoChallenge Lesson Resources and talk with your BR Educator to come up with a plan.
Should I tell my class?
The BR EcoChallenge Contest was designed as an incentive for teachers to participate in the EcoChallenge. Whether you share the content with your students is up to you. While prize money could certainly motivate your students to participate (especially if you were to share in the wealth with a class party or cool new tool or toy), the drawback is that research has shown when linking attempts at behaviour change (the EcoChallenges) with incentives (prizes, such as money), behaviour change happens only so long as the incentives continue. The goal here is for education, certainly, along with some change in behaviour. This would be much more likely if the challenge was presented as fun and exciting just as is (without the carrot of the prize money for the teachers)
What are the rules?
Want to get into the nitty gritty of how it all works? Read the EcoChallenge Contest Rules.