Go Green Update

February 2016

What are you doing to promote green school initiatives in your classroom?

Please e-mail Janice, Sarah, Michelle, Karen, or Terri with a picture of students working, samples of student work, and a description of any activities that relate to our green school initiatives. We will be sure to save your information in the correct location so that we can use it to renew our green school status.

Butterfly Professional Development

Thanks to Karen for attending the professional development on butterflies. Please watch the video that she posted to Edmodo and make a comment to show that you watched. This activity will count for your grade level to earn a point on our Go Green! graph.

Upcycling Collection

February is National Children’s Dental Month! To celebrate, the Environmental Committee will have bins in the lobby to collect dental hygiene items that can be upcycled through Tom’s of Maine to earn cash for West Towson ES including toothbrushes, toothpaste tubes, mouthwash containers, dental floss containers, and deodorant tubes.

We will also continue to collect cereal bags in the school lobby during February.

Thanks for upcycling!!!

Big Cats Project

Karen is working with 3rd graders on the Big Cats Project. Stay tuned for more information on a fun celebration we have planned to celebrate wild cats this spring!

Westy Wear Swap!

We are trying to organize a Westy Wear swap at the next PTA event. Stay tuned for more information!

Recycling at WTES

The 4th and 5th graders have been coming to the rooms to collect your recycling. Starting this quarter, the students will also weigh your recycling container once a month to collect data.

Grade Level Projects

The following is the list of projects from last year. If you are going to change your project, please let us know and we will update the list.

K - Outdoor classroom

1st - Upcycling crayons

2nd - Bluebird boxes

3rd - In addition to the rotting log garden, all third grade students are researching an endangered animal. Included in this research is how people can get involved to save these endangered animals. In Library, they will make presentations using their research. Mrs. Steffen's class is also observing the bird feeder by the playground. They have visuals, binoculars, and a record sheet to record their observations. So far, they haven't seen much bird activity.

4th - Butterfly garden

5th - Raingarden

Go Green Graph!

In order to keep "green" on all of our minds, we will have a graph in the lobby to keep track of green school activities by grade level. If you send us documentation of a green activity, we will add a block on the bar graph. We will also add your ideas to the list above so that we can all learn from each other. Let's help each other achieve the schoolwide goal of maintaining green school status!

You can e-mail a picture of students working or a student work sample along with a short description of the activity to one of the green team members. We will save it to the shared drive for you.

Examples of Activities:

* Last year, Gretchen's class had an in-class lunch one day where they laid out four posters on the floor for 1) recycling, 2) upcycling, 3) compost, 4) and (finally) trash. Everyone ate lunch together with whatever they had brought or bought from the cafeteria, and then at the end of lunch, they all talked about their waste and on what poster it belonged. Students were amazed to see how the items piled up, which pile had the most, and how much of their lunch didn't actually need to be thrown away. (I know we can't compost at the school, but it was still a lesson about what is biodegradable.)
*An environmental connection in ELA (Sarah distributed a resource to help find these lessons)
*Upcycle in your classroom.
*Use the butterfly garden, native garden, rotting log garden, or rain garden to teach your class.
*Water dance
*Write to inform or writing to persuade assignments pertaining to an environmental issue.
*Use upcycled and recycled materials for an activity. For example, K has the kids use recycled materials to make Native American and pilgrim outfits for their Thanksgiving celebration. 2nd grade used to do a cereal box book report.

*Create a "no mow" zone.

*Stencil storm drains.

*Oyster project

*Watch the video Karen shared on Edmodo to teach us what she learned at the butterfly workshop.

*Water conservation

*The green team is going to coordinate a Westy wear swap at a PTA event.

*The green team asked the school store coordinators if they could sell reusable snack bags and cotton reusable napkins with the WTES logo. The Westy Wear PTA contact from the PTA is going to look into getting reusable bags to sell.

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Green Team Committee:
Janice Stout
Sarah De Felice
Karen Kuebler
Michelle Huber
Terri Mohr

WTES PTA Environmental Committee

Items that WTES Upcycles