• Ontario
  • Elementary

Kortright Hills PS

Water Rockers

  • 16 Challenges Completed
  • 0 Challenges not completed

A Green-Powered Canada

Completed

Description

We talked about renewable energy types. Then we focused our research on solar energy. The kids learned a ton about solar energy and how it exists now in Canada and how they are hoping it will exist down the road. They presented their research to the class when they were done.

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Buckle Up

Completed

Description

We talked about different types of transportation. Students were assigned different forms of transportation and they researched the history and also the future of that particular type. We brainstormed what makes some transportation "smart". Which forms are best for the planet? We had a class discussion about some of their findings and what they had discovered and what they were curious about. Some transportation modes they thought would work in bigger cities and some not. Finally, we went online and figured out how to create word clouds in the shape of vehicles with Smart forms of transportation. They had a blast doing this for the first time!

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Community Connections

Completed

Description

My students researched National Winter Walk Day (on Feb. 2nd). We discussed why something like that would be created and the impact it would have. We brainstormed about how much energy it would save to have everyone in our school participate in this winter walk for at least one hour. We also talked about the other great benefits of walking outside such as fresh air, exercise, brain break, and connecting with nature. Next, we talked about how we could get the message out to our community members about it. My students created posters, morning announcements, and a newsletter blurb about Winter Walk Day. Our entire school of almost 600 people participated (in a covid-safe way!) and a number of community members also reported going on their own walks that day.

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Do You Really Need It?

Completed

Description

As a class, we created a list of all of the things they use on a daily basis (at both home and school) that require electricity. Then we discussed what the differences are between Needs and Wants. At first, several of them wanted to include phones and other devices under Needs. The students came up with ideas for when they could be considered a Need in an emergency situation, but by the end, everyone agreed that for the most part, those things are Wants in our lives. Then I handed out the page and asked them to fill it out. I asked them to choose one thing in their Wants category that they would be willing to give up for one day. They easily came up with ideas to do instead such as playing outside, playing board games, and reading.

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Game Time!

Completed

Description

We had a class discussion about food waste. Then we used the chromebooks to research food waste in Canada and around the world. My students were extremely shocked. It was definitely a topic many of them had not thought about before and they didn't realize the huge quantities of food that are thrown out every single day in our homes, stores, and restaurants. We talked about the energy that is needed to grow and transport our food and gets wasted when our food just gets thrown out. We brainstormed possible solutions to the food waste issues. They created a list of ideas including making it a by-law that all restaurants MUST donate their leftover food every day to local food shelters and people in need. They thought that food waste at home could be reduced by putting food that needs to be used up in the next day, on one shelf of the fridge so that family members will reach for that first. They designed their game boards and were given the option to include other energy topics that we've learned about this year. We had a game playing afternoon once all of the game boards had been created! Just awesome fun and learning!

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Get Growing

Completed

Description

I went to the store and bought some red runner beans. We discussed what beans need to grow. A student wrapped 4 beans up in a wet paper towel. It was put in a small bag and taped to our portable window. It took just over 2 weeks, and then at long last, it began to sprout! The kids were SO excited! They documented the changes to it every day and noticed all of the little details with the roots and the leaves. We will be planting this in our school vegetable garden in a couple of months!!

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How Big Are Your Carbon Feet?

Completed

Description

We had a class discussion about carbon dioxide and then we got the chromebooks out and the kids did some research about what they do every day that causes a carbon footprint. We came back together as a class and discussed activity options that wouldn't cause any carbon footprint and we created a lengthy list. The students were asked to choose any five ideas from the list to create their "foot"

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One Hour No Power

Completed

Description

Over a three week period, we turned off our portable lights for 2+ hours a day. I had a different student turn off and on the lights each time with a class announcement so that we took responsibility for this challenge as a group. We counted how many lightbulbs we have in our portable and how much energy each bulb requires and figured out approx how many hours a day we normally have the lights on. We discussed if that was necessary with four big portable windows. We easily turned them off for more than two hours a day and chose activities that the class could do during that time such as reading, writing, math, etc. The students were amazed at how much energy we saved by doing this every week and asked if we could keep this up for the rest of the year. Sounds good to me!

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Story Time

Completed

Description

I had them close their eyes and listen as I walked them through picturing themselves 30 years from now. I asked them to think about what they thought their vehicles might be like, their jobs, and their homes too. I asked them to think about what they hoped the world would be like, the wildlife, the oceans, the water supply, smart technology, energy supply, and air quality. Next, I handed out the chromebooks and asked them to type a once page letter to their future self in 30 years and describe in detail all of the things that they just pictured.

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Take-Home

Completed

Description

I walked my students through how to fill in the waste tracking sheet at home. I sent the page home with them and gave them a three week deadline. They brought the pages back to me and I added up the totals. The students reported having some great conversations at home about this challenge.

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The Phantom of the Classroom

Completed

Description

We had a class discussion about phantom power and what it means. Then we talked about where it would occur in their homes and what they could do about it. Next, they had to walk around the classroom to discover all of the outlets and we discussed which ones had phantom basis. We talked about what we could do to eliminate phantom power in the classroom. Then they drew pictures of our classroom showing the present pantom power locations and the locations of all outlets.

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Tips and Tricks

Completed

Description

First, we brainstormed how we can communicate to grades K, 1, and 2 students to understand how to save energy when they are at school. The kids quickly created a list of ideas in young kid friendly language. I had a team of four students write morning announcements for the entire school based on our list and we made up a schedule for them to read them every day over a two week period. The whole class designed their own posters based on ideas from the list and we put the posters up in the hallways all over the school. We will leave the posters up for the next couple of months!

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Video Challenge

Completed

Description

First, the students made a list of world issues that concerned them. Plastic in the ocean and plastic on the school yard were popular choices. We had a class discussion about how they thought plastic was made and then they researched about it. They were shocked to discover how much oil and water it takes to make plastic and the toxic pollution that is produced in the process. Then they researched other issues with plastic in regards to our health and the health/safety of wildlife. They decided we needed a plastic-free campaign at the school! And they wanted to lead it! They started by writing morning announcements and creating hallway posters about using reusable bottles, reusable containers and cutlery, etc. Then they created a school-wide challenge to see how waste-free our lunches and snacks could be every Wednesday in the whole school. We told parents about this in a newsletter and students made weekly announcements to the school. Next, the class created a script for our video and planned out what they wanted the video to include. It was 100% student-made from beginning to end! Once the video was made, we used all of the props from it to create a huge bulletin board display in the front hall of the school. We bought a copy of the book "No More Plastic" by Alma Fullerton. All of our grades 3-8 classes read it and discussed it. Then, we signed up for a No More Plastic initiative with a local group called "One World Schoolhouse Foundation", to have live student workshops with author Alma Fullerton. It also had a built-in fundraiser with a goal of $30,000 for an Indigenous coummunity in PEI who are working on a new national park reserve with Parks Canada and want their beaches, land, and waterways plastic-free. It's an Earth Day initiative, and our class goal is to raise $500 for it. They've also arranged for us to have a live hangout with some of the PEI Indigenous members and some grade 3/4 students in PEI after the fundraiser has been completed. We will also be receiving a signed copy of "No More Plastic" for our school library and a set of "Story Time Trail" posters for our school to go with the book. What started out as a brainstorming session for what our video could focus on this year, really transformed into something very impactful for my grade five students to organize and feel fantastic about!

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Water Works

Completed

Description

We had a class discussion about what we use water for every day. Then I asked them if they knew that water is used to make everything around us. They didn't. That led us to doing several hours of research about how much water it takes to make our everyday items such as clothing and cars. We also looked at water equity in the world and the students agreed how very very lucky we are to have the amazing water supply that we do. Then I told the class that they had a homework challenge to complete about their water use for one day. Then I asked them to show the amounts to their parents and to discuss how they might be able to cut back on their water usage at home, even by a tiny amount. Then they recorded their home water usage for a second day. They brought back their calculations to the class and we had a discussion about what they noticed and what they learned. They learned a lot about how much water they directly use at home.

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What’s For Lunch?

Completed

Description

We first had a class discussion about what local food even means. Then we researched what foods are grown in southern Ontario. Then the students went on the Foodland Ontario website to find different recipes to choose from. They chose their favourites and wrote them down.

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What’s Old is New Again

Completed

Description

We had a class discussion about all of the ways we already re-use recycled items at both home and school. Then we talked about and created a list to show a visual of all of the different types of things we put in our recycling bins. We brainstormed new ideas and projects for using our recycled items even more. Then I brought in two big bags of recycling from home (since it's covid and we aren't recycling at school yet) and in pairs, the students were asked to create something. They had a ball creating working canons and rocket ships, robots, and houses with furniture, etc.

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Energy savings by the numbers

water_works 138,460 Litres of water conserved
hour_no_power 2,653 Hours of no power
take_home 107,182 Items Kept from Landfill