Caring for the environment is a topic Choice takes to heart.
It’s without a doubt important that we begin the conversation early with students and work together to create stewards of the planet so future generations can enjoy its bounty. In celebration of Earth Day, Wednesday April 22, take a look at these tips from our resident expert, Holly Orians, Environmental Education Coordinator of West Michigan Academy of Environmental Science, and see how you can incorporate them into your classroom.
Teacher Tips for Environmental Friendliness
- When available use at least 85% post-consumer waste recyclable paper for your classroom.
- Enact a waste-free snack program. Encourage parents to send snacks in reusable containers or fruits or veggies that can be composted.
- Have a zero waste snack contest between classroom. Gather snack waste for a week and see what room can generate the least amount of waste.
- “Ban” or seriously discourage plastic water bottles or any other container that can be thrown away. Instead encourage reusable water bottles only.
- Have a NO PAPER, NO PLASTIC, NO LIGHTS Day and see if classrooms/teachers can come up with creative lessons.
- Make seed balls to throw around campus to grow native plants.
- Have a classroom contest and create artwork from trash that was picked up near that school or make art only with recyclable materials. The school can vote on the best artwork and classroom can win a waste-free snack.
- Encourage no idling around the parking lot. Have students research WHY and visit cars and hand out info on idling!
Environmental Focus at Muskegon Montessori Academy for Environmental Change (MMAEC)
At MMAEC, we are working to take care of each other and our environment around us. From invasive species removal to summer camps to educate our community youth, we are constantly striving to make a difference in our world. We are excited to announce a large STEM grant we received that will allow us to add an indoor science lab, as well as an outdoor science experience area with a greenhouse! Currently, students are planting various vegetables and plants indoors that will then be transplanted to our existing outdoor pallet gardens in a few weeks. Our hope is to use our vegetable garden to provide snacks for classrooms and after school care. We have also been working on cleaning up our campus since the snowmelt left garbage and other natural debris in our yard. Once we tidy up our yard, we will work to help our neighbors clean up their yards. We will also head out to our local beach access point on Lake Michigan and do a trash clean up day!
Currently we recycle paper and cardboard, but participate in Terracylce where we recycle the juice pouches and fruitsauce pouches. We will purchase compost bins soon with our STEM grant money so we will begin to compost our lunch waste!
We are proud that our environmental focus paired with our Montessori style of teaching enables our students to explore their interests and find their own answers which, in turn, creates a lifelong love of learning!
How does your school incorporate plan to celebrate Earth Day? Share with us in the comments below.