Horace Allen Eco Rangers
- 11 Challenges Completed
- 5 Challenges not completed
We wanted to know how we could help our local SPCA with the many cats and dogs that they take care of with volunteers! We asked if they could use any second-hand items and they gave us a list of things that would be appreciated. "Always in need of towels (all sizes) and smaller size blankets, bathmats, gently used metal pet dishes (we are trying to get away from plastics), face cloths for cleaning, hand towels & if you have any gently used cat & dog toys – anything along those lines would be purr-fect." We are holding a re-use drive at the school next Monday - Wednesday and hope to collect lots for them! We have informed all families and have our collection bin in the lobby entrance! We also are beginning a literacy and empathy- building program from the Alberta SPCA 'Animal Tales' project and we will be writing letters to the cats at our shelter! The ladies, who know 'cat language' will be writing back to our students interpreting from the cats! This was started last year by the local SPCA Board and the grade 2s absolutely loved hearing back from the cats!
Do You Really Need It?
Our whole K-3 school participated in the Planet Protectors virtual assembly "Keep Cool" and dressed as 'superhero planet protectors' for the day! Each one of our grade 2s told what their eco superpower would be to "Take care of our environment" - one of our school goals! The Eco Rangers in grade 2 took the "Do you really need it?" template home to record their energy use and chose one device to give up for a day.
Eco Rangers have started a seed tray inside with a variety of types of seeds. They are watching the germinating time and comparing the growth. In June, they will transfer these vegetable to our raised beds on our outdoor field and care for them, hoping to harvest in the fall for a fall veggie wrap buffet.
How Big Are Your Carbon Feet?
Our Eco Rangers asked the three grade 1 classes to take on this challenge. They watched the "The Green Ninja" short video after our whole school participated in the Planet Protector "Keep Cool" virtual assembly! They discussed why the Green Ninja's feet were so big and what helped to shrink them. They talked about ways they could save energy in the school and at home and each student created a footprint with their chosen message which they put up in the hallways for everyone to 'follow'!
One Hour No Power
One Grade 3 class organized this challenge and asked the whole school to track their power reduction for a week. Grade 3 teams came around to each class to explain the challenge. Each class was given a tracking sheet to to color in every day on the graph how many minutes of NO power time they were able to manage. Students were responsible for reminding their teachers and deciding what took power and what did not! After 5 days, the totals were added and posted for comparison!
Our kindergarteners wanted to tell the story of their weekly outdoor "Wonder Walks" where they discover and engage with our nature spaces in our schoolgrounds and sometimes across the street at the creek. They are learning about energy and how we can all help the earth by doing small things that can make difference!
The Phantom of the Classroom
One Grade 3 class took this challenge on and created a detailed school map showing the areas that were using power without something obviously needing it. They even gave themselves a name "3B Earth League" and color coded the types of energy. The poster and bulletin board display is attracting many students to 'read' their findings!
Tips and Tricks
Grade 2 Eco Rangers are doing the school daily morning announcements for the "Earth month" of April with some great ECO TIPS for the students to hear and share with their families! One student is in charge of assigning 1 or 2 students to pick a tip for their turn to do the announcements! We have even had some grade ones want to share some of their tips, too! They also created an Eco Tip bulletin board with some of the ways we can help our earth! We also send a monthly Eco Club attachment to our school newsletter and this month we listed all the CEDC challenges we are doing at Horace Allen!
Images & Downloads
Grade 2s are learning about the importance of and inequity of clean water in our world (grade 2 science "Liquids" unit). We discovered a United Nations initiative called "tippy taps", a crude solution to a real world problem of accessibility to water. We learned about them from an outdoor learning teacher who uses them to provide water for outdoor mud play. We asked our grade 6 teacher if his class would be interested in designing tippy taps for our outdoor classroom and they accepted and are now in the design stage.
What’s For Lunch?
After taking part in "The Great Big Crunch", a Canada-wide movement and annual moment of anti-silence in which students, teachers, parents and others passionate about food join the food movement and crunch into apples (or other crunchy fruit or vegetable) to make noise for healthy school food, students began to discuss the concept of 'local' and why eating local foods saves energy and promotes health! The challenge was to use something healthy and locally produced so with the help of our school nutrition coordinator, we were able to enjoy cucumbers grown in Medicine Hat! We found that a huge majority of the students (our whole school - K-3) loved them! We then sent the "What's for Lunch?" recipe template home asking families to consider submitting a 'local' recipe. We have received some and hope to have each class choose one or two of their recipes to contribute towards a little school cookbook with some tips and ideas written and illustrated by students!
What’s Old is New Again
Our art teacher had each class create 3D paper sculptures from scrap paper using a variety of shapes and colors. Our grade 2 classes also made drums from canned tomato/fruit cans and covered them with balloon like material and decorated the sides with nature pictures after reading the story "My Dad is a Drummer" from our Social Studies series. They searched outside for small sticks to use for the drumstick and covered the end with some cotton and a small piece of wax paper to make a suitable drumming sound. Our student teacher contacted an Indigenous representative from our local Pikani nation to ask for direction to create these drums to be somewhat 'authentic' to his culture. He then came to present a 'drumming' session to all of or students by grade where they could listen to him play and drum along. They were able to listen to his explanation of some of the symbolic songs and ask questions!