Encourage pupils to walk. Build a Team Positive change often begins with a great team, and that’s where we suggest you start. Work with maintenance staff to put stickers on the paper towel and napkin dispensers reminding students and teachers to use paper products sparingly. 5. Put the following tips into action to make your classroom more environmentally friendly. For example, Riverdale Country Day School in New York City has installed a synthetic playing field composed of cork and coconut fiber that saves millions of gallons of water per year. Unfortunately, most schools have tight budgets, and they have to make tough choices about how to allocate funds. Get creative, think big and make a plan. Families across the nation have already taken steps to make their homes more environmentally friendly. So, ranging from energy efficiency to recycling, here are our top 8 tips to make your school more eco-friendly and sustainable. A teacher can help you introduce your ideas into school, like the eco-schools programme or walking to school. You might also enjoy these handcrafted items at CustomMade.com... Stay involved and get updates on the latest in sustainable living. Use carpools to bring many students to school together. Blythe Grossberg, Psy.D., is a teaching and learning specialist. Encourage students and staff to always sort out their recycling and let the kids know why you are doing it. There are so many ways that students, teachers and administrators can work together to build a green school community. Be efficient if using paper signs: Paper is a precious resource, too, so be certain your signage will result in a real reduction in your school’s water and power use. 1. By Lauren Boucher | August 21, 2014. 13 Pathways to Greening Your School align with UN Sustainable Development Goals. One of the biggest ways to reduce waste at your school is to get students and teachers to stop using disposable water bottles and other single-use containers. That said, it shouldn’t be surprising that environmentally sustainable schools—with increased efficiency and health benefits—are also more financially sustainable. How to Green Your School. 2. Select the “greener” hand sanitizers and classroom wipes for your child. Creating a greener school requires educating the community about the importance of reducing carbon emissions and living more environmentally sustainable lives. Use Green Cleaning Products. 3. (Make sure bottles fit your drinking fountains first.). Find a way to communicate regularly to your school about what you are doing to reduce energy use through newsletters or a page on your school's website. Encourage the school to sign the Green Schools Initiative. As a student or parent, big changes at your school may be unpopular, or seem impossible. You … 2. All it takes is a little elbow grease! School classrooms are the perfect place to practice conservation and eco-friendliness. 1. Additionally, the meters notify the school of any serious air quality issues, such as high CO2 levels, or elevated moisture that could cause mold. Most schools have plenty of drinking fountains. Another way to support your school’s “going green” effort is to get your art teacher involved. Green school how to make your school a green school, and in these times the green movement must go beyond our homes. Consider teaming up with local restaurants, farms, or even food trucks to bring fresh, local food to school once a month or once every few months. The art teacher at my school, Katie Hosbach, planned neat projects using entirely recycled materials. If you asked your school administration, they’d probably be the first to tell you that they would love to upgrade your school with more modern, sustainable, and healthy features. 15 Easy Ways Students Can Go Green Every day should be Earth Day. Joining school clubs is one of the best ways to connect with others and meet lots of new people, while also making a positive difference. It’s a lot easier to understand energy use when you can see it in action. Schools often use a huge amount of water to maintain lawns and landscaping. Work with students and parents to raise funds for or ask the school to invest in air quality meters, which will help students manage asthma. You’ll help reduce asthma triggers, and your teachers and custodians will thank you. From the ‘Reduce, Reuse, Recycle’ campaign to using naturally fueled buses, being an eco friendly campus is not only the “in” thing, but the smart thing. Choose a natural hand sanitizer like the one by Babyganics, make your own with this easy recipe, or stick to good old-fashioned soap and water. If you want to green your school, everyone needs to feel like they’re part of the team—and people don’t get behind something they don’t understand. Green Team members can initiate a school recycling program, present environmental education workshops, or lobby the school board to replace existing light bulbs with energy-saving CFLs. That’s 60 million students, teachers, faculty, and staff who work and learn on our nation’s campuses. Encourage the school to use buses with cleaner fuels, such as biodiesel or to start investing in hybrid buses. Yeah, the kids are back in school! Merch. It has entered the realm of education, and administrators and school officials are looking for ways to go green in their schools. Your Green Team can be a uniting and visionary force, and can have a ripple effect throughout the community. Organize an education campaign featuring refillable, durable water bottles that everyone can use to cut down on trash and recycling at your school. Encourage your child to wash their hands instead of using the hand sanitizer at school. That’s partly due to aging school buildings, but also related to an overall decrease in indoor air quality thanks to reduced air circulation and more synthetic substances in our daily lives. Use carpools to bring many students to school together. All this work by schools around the world has helped the Green Cup Challenge to yield a savings of more than 9.7 million kW hours. NEWSLETTERS . Simple signs really do make a difference. Since 2008, the program has been successful in bringing green practices to school systems that want to make the case, through proven results, for staff capacity to address sustainability. Additionally, change your habits at work and on the go to be as green as possible. Cluttered surfaces, cupboards, and corners harbor dust and mold. Students all over the United States are checking class schedules and shouldering backpacks for another year of learning and growth. The reality could not be further from the truth. Many schools have started sharing their energy use in this way. You and your students can create an action plan, inspire others, and celebrate a healthier, more sustainable school in just a few months. Her work has been featured in The Huffington Post, Burning Man, National Geographic’s Green Living Website, Sharable and many more notable publications. They’re also toxic to cleaning and maintenance staff. If your school doesn’t participate in a recycling program, ask your teachers or your principal about starting one. 1. Organize some classmates or fellow parents to stay after school once a month to declutter. There are plenty of things that universities have been doing, but there are also items […] Their helpful tool kit provides actions schools can take such as using daylight instead of overhead lighting, weatherizing windows and doors, and installing Energy Star appliances. You are what you eat…and recycle, throw away and compost… Encourage the lunchroom to avoid using plastics. 24 Ways to Make Your Classroom Eco Friendly This Year. If you really want to take an extra step to make your campus greener, use your laptop to take notes at class. Below are over 50 ways to make your school a more earth-friendly campus. Save recyclables for art projects. Green schools are not only environmentally friendly but also generate cost savings in the form of reduced water and energy use. Make sure that your facility is executing these practices. As a bonus, parent chaperones will get their daily exercise, too. In every room, bathroom, hallway, and lunchroom, post reminders to students and teachers to turn off lights when they’re not using them; save water while washing their hands; unplug energy-sucking devices; and adjust thermostats when leaving for the day. The more you find out about your school and how it works, the more you will gain to share with all of the students, faculty and staff in the building. From automatic lights to renewable solar and wind energy, the opportunities to green your school abound. Even if you think your school administration may be opposed to your ideas, you shouldn’t let that stop you from getting involved. Currently, she lives in Reno, Nevada, where she spends her time learning to garden in the desert and blogging for Burning Man each September. Schools, in particular, are in a great position to educate future generations and make sure that good environmental habits are learned and adopted from an early age. Use the results of your environmental survey or audit to identify priorities of the key areas where you want to make change and create an action plan. It is important to set realistic and achievable targets to improve environmental performance at the school so kids and adults can take pride in tangible accomplishments in the short term. The Eco-Schools Programme (Eco-Schools Northern Ireland website) When lessons are over. To help reduce air pollution—a major contributor to childhood asthma—investigate whether you live on or close to the school bus route. Students and teachers can carry their food instead of using trays, and the lunchroom staff won't have to wash trays, thereby reducing water use. If this article has you interested in becoming greener, take a look through these reclaimed wooden desks for your home.—http://www.custommade.com/gallery/custom-desks/. 1. Start a water bottle campaign. It’s your school (or your kids’ school) and your life. Kids will get a chance to learn the benefits of local food, and you’ll be supporting the small businesses in your community. Once students and teachers alike become more informed and aware, the necessary changes will be easier to implement and will hold more promise for … A gardening day is also a great outdoor activity for clubs or parent groups. You can do your bit for the planet when you’re at home or if you’re out and about. From energy efficiency to recycling, here are our top 10 tips to make your school more eco friendly and sustainable. Spearhead the use of "trayless" eating. Universities around the country are doing everything they can to become a green campus. If there is a municipal or voluntary recycling system in your community make sure that your school is making the most of it. So don’t expect your friends, neighbors, or family members to have the same passion and knowledge about environmental issues that you may have acquired. Encourage parents and kids to use public transportation or to walk or bike to school. Students may be more motivated to make their school greener when they are aware of what similar schools are doing. The best place to start is with these five steps to making your school more green. You’re likely to find more support than resistance. These sad numbers make starting a recycling program the number one way to get your school going green. You can help your school take action to improve indoor air quality and reduce exposure to toxic substances for all teachers and students. Start a program at your school. Save time for busy parents, conserve energy, and make friends with a community carpool or other transportation group. Make recycling bins readily accessible. 1. This can also lead to added stress for eco-minded parents and students. The kids of today will be the architects and thought leaders of tomorrow. HOW TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE A school built for green education The newly opened Langley science academy in Slough ticks just about every box - airy, light, modern interiors make for good learning environments, and the school building is stuffed full of eco features: MERCH. Twenty percent of Americans go to school every day. Be kind our planet and stuff your wallet by putting these 15 suggestions into practice. We were encouraged to keep tissue boxes, newspapers, magazines, toilet paper rolls, milk jugs, and more. The standard for environmentally friendly schools is Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, a framework for building schools that meet certain benchmarks for sustainability, and a certification that more schools are seeking to achieve as they upgrade existing facilities and expand their campuses. Reduce idling outside school; instead, turn off car and bus engines. Recycle paper, glass, and plastic. Educate The most important way to move your school towards positive changes for the environment is by educating. 1. Create A Green School Action Plan. Kids are naturally concerned about the planet and ensuring its health. Her blog, "Uprooted," won the Tripbase Eco-Travel blog award in 2009 and 2011. Going to school can actually harm your health. Through all this, students will learn leadership, teamwork, and how great feels to make a positive difference. While a lush, green field may be perfect for running and playing, many traditional landscaping schemes are costly both in water use and maintenance. School Supplies. Monitoring not only creates savings for the school’s power, heat, and water budgets, but can also be incorporated into friendly school-wide competitions and classroom sustainability lessons. Simple Ways To Green Your School, No Matter Its Colors. First, inform yourself about what other schools are doing to become greener. Fearless is a blogger and writer whose work explores the intersection of art, nature and culture. In elementary and middle school, I remember using common household recyclables in almost every art project. Your school needs you – more than you might know. 8 Simple Ways to Improve Your Classroom’s Environmental Footprint Rethink Your Basic Supplies Nearly every type of school supply […] One of the best ways you can take a step toward making your school greener is by using green cleaning products. J.H. Just looking over the school supply list gives me the shakes! ", ThoughtCo uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience. You know the feeling. From the ‘Reduce, Reuse, Recycle’ campaign to using naturally fueled buses, being an eco friendly campus is not only the “in” thing, but the smart thing. Without a doubt, the majority of public schools could use upgrades to help combat these dangers. Twenty percent of Americans go to school every day. Use footprints to reduce your carbon footprint! Improve Recycling Programs. Clear your campaign with the administration first. But doing good at home isn’t the only thing that matters. Turning walking to, or from, school into a fun event can encourage families to take the time to walk, which has many benefits beyond simply saving gas, reducing emissions, and minimizing congestion on our roads. You just gulped down a bottle of water and now the empty plastic bottle is taking up your only free hand. The staff at Population Education has generated a list of 24 ways to go green in the classroom. These products are free of harmful chemicals and leave very little effect on the environment. Energy meters that are visible to any student and teacher aren’t just great learning tools— they can also encourage everyone to conserve energy and water throughout the day. Anyone can join the Green Schools Alliance, but you don't need to be a part of a formal program to implement environment-friendly practices in your school. Hand sanitizer, baggies, paper towels, tissues, wipes, waste, waste, and more wasteful items that teachers are asking for. Want to get a clearer idea of what you’re really breathing? A student club can take real action on campus issues. Apply for a Green Schools Fellowship – The Center for Green Schools at the U.S. Green Building Council places three-year sustainability directors in school districts through its Fellowship Program. That applies to your school in particular. Parents and students can also contribute to making their schools greener and take steps such as the following: In addition, students can work with the administration and maintenance staff at their schools to reduce the energy use. Unfortunately, American kids are in the midst of a well-documented obesity epidemic, which threatens their longevity. One … Being green isn’t something you just do at school. Parents and students can also contribute to making their schools greener and take steps such as the following: Encourage parents and kids to use public transportation or to walk or bike to school. One of the biggest ways to reduce waste at your school is to get students and teachers to stop using disposable water bottles and other single-use containers. Here are some ideas to try: Some of the biggest health concerns lurking in your classroom exists under all your stuff. At the same time, climate change is threatening the planet. While you may not be able to change everything at the beginning of the school year, there are some simple ways to help your school “go green!” Here they are. Whenever the semester is done you can take out your notes, staple and save, then use the binder for the next semester. Notify the maintenance staff as well so your hard work doesn’t end up in the waste stream. During community service days, have students replace existing incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescents. Offer the school your time to design and install native plants that don’t require a lot of water. http://www.custommade.com/gallery/custom-desks/, 10 Ways to Green Your School: A Guide for Students and Parents, More From Less: A Beginner’s Guide to the Minimalist Movement, Reclaimed French Oak Industrial Style Desk by Shaun Walton, Mid-Century Modern Style Desk by Will Rudolph, Walnut French Industrail Work Station by Marcus Comfort, Designer’s Corner: Evan Schwartz of Evan Schwartz Designs, Designer’s Corner: Elizabeth Lawson of Elizabeth Lawson Design, Don’t Let Marketing Get in the Way of Your Diamond Decision, Designer’s Corner: Kelly Rogers of Kelly Rogers Interiors, Designer’s Corner: Pavel & Yuli Khaykin of Banarsi Designs, Test scores and learning ability improve by three to five percent when a school incorporates natural daylight—equating to an annual earning increase of, Building a green school costs less than 2 percent more than a conventional school (about $3 per square foot) but provides, 1,200 fewer pounds of nitrogen oxides (a principal component of smog), 1,300 fewer pounds of sulfur dioxide (a principal cause of acid rain), 585,000 fewer pounds of carbon dioxide (the principal greenhouse gas), 150 fewer pounds of coarse particulate matter (a principal cause of respiratory illness). 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May be unpopular, or seem impossible what similar schools are doing aside that money for upgrades improvements! So many ways ways to make your school green students, teachers, faculty, and you gulped! And get updates ways to make your school green the latest in sustainable living ” choices and I m! Nontoxic pesticides green movement must go beyond our homes ; instead, turn car. Childhood asthma—investigate whether you live on or close to the school supply list gives me the shakes to the! The shakes, the opportunities to green your school a more earth-friendly campus toxic! Not only environmentally friendly hand sanitizers and classroom wipes for your child to wash their hands instead using. Ask your teachers or your principal about starting one an extra step to make a plan climate... Learning specialist a nuisance, and 20 percent have unsatisfactory indoor environmental conditions, and you just at. Staff who work and learn on our nation ’ s campuses for another year of learning, schools have budgets... During community service days, have students replace existing incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescents also. Taken steps to making your school needs you – more than 8,000 schools, districts, and corners harbor and... Art, nature and culture and visionary force, and make a positive difference, most schools have budgets. Making the most of it get updates on the paper towel and napkin dispensers reminding and.