Wednesday, October 31, 2012
Monday, September 17, 2012
There are so many ways to get others involved in your passion for greener schools. Schedule an assembly on climate change with the Alliance for Climate Education. http://www.acespace.org
Have our Green Schools Band perform and get school personnel and students motivated to make a difference this year....
Tuesday, July 24, 2012
Inspired by the youth and adults at the conference, she joined the newly formed Massachusetts Power Shift and planned a climate conference for hundreds of students and community members. She then helped the group transform into a network of student climate advocates pushing for legislative and social change to address climate change.
Convening: for engaged leadership and a common visionConnecting: to coordinate training, align services, increase capacitySustaining: to develop resources and public awarenessMeasuring and evaluating: for quality and impact
Thursday, June 21, 2012
Wednesday, June 6, 2012
Google Docs makes it easy to create, store and share online documents, spreadsheets and presentations.
Sunday, May 20, 2012
Sunday, April 29, 2012
Tuesday, April 17, 2012
Name: Carol Bowe
School:Boston Latin School
Biography: I started working with my school's environmental group, BLS YouthCAN, when I was in 8th grade. Then in 2009 we began work on a green roof at BLS. However, it was much more than that. It wasn't simply a green roof for our students. The plan is that it will be equipped with outdoor classrooms, wind turbines, solar panels, and even a greenhouse. I will be a place where students can learn and students from any school can come and check it out. We would also put data collected on the roof on our website (blsyouthcan.org) so anyone can learn from it. We have been fundraising and giving presentations about it ever since. For example just recently we presented to the mayor and the city, which was really exciting because we are now pushing this project further. We've even had design charrettes to tweak our original plans. It has been a long process but in the end it will all be worth it!
Youth CAN is what lead me to green schools and the student ambassador program. I began last year and I am so excited that I have had this opportunity. It has lead me to learn much and discover many opportunities. One of the most exciting for me was meeting Eco Orchards at a green schools event. I had always been really upset that we were recycling and trying to cut down our waste at school yet we still had styrofoam lunch trays. They are recycled by the city but it was still not good for the environment. We purchased an order of compostable trays from Eco Orchards for a two day trial. I am hoping that this leads to further use of these and eventually a complete switch from styrofoam. I am very excited to be working in the student ambassadors program!
Sunday, March 18, 2012
Sunday, March 4, 2012
Being an environmental design professional, this was one of my favorite Green Schools events...
On Saturday, March 3rd Ambassadors representing Wilmington High School and The Bridge School in Lexington met at the brand new Boston Society of Architects offices and gallery in Boston to learn about sustainable design. Polly Carpenter from Learning By Design in Massachusetts presented to the students the principles of sustainable design including the use of renewable resources like bamboo.Of course sustainable design is that and so much more...It's about preserving natural resources like energy, water, land and trees and about giving back to the earth so that future generations will not run out..it's about doing no harm and creating healthful and healing environments for all.
We all had the chance to participate in a thought provoking design activity by creating a weather proof shelter out of one single piece of paper. Students and adults had to become resourceful with few tools being allowed in the process...It produced some interesting results as one can imagine. Attendees toured the gallery as well.
Learning By Design in Massachusetts is a K-12 architecture and design education program. They will be part of an event July 9-20 at The Museum Institute for Teaching Science for elementary and middle school educators exploring how science inspires engineering...you can visit the website at www.mits.org
Monday, February 20, 2012
This year we are focusing on repairing our green house since it was ruined by hurricane Irene,increasing our current recycling regime, and are currently trying to implement solar panels on MHS's roof.
Saturday, February 11, 2012
Last Saturday, February 4th students from Sharon High School gathered at Mansfield High School, home of Green Schools to share their knowledge, experience and progress in composting at Sharon High School. Matt Ostrow and Vineeta Nangia along with other members of the group YCOMP (Youth Composting Organization for Massachusetts Populace, ycomp.org) educated attendees with a well organized slide presentation of the benefits of composting as well as direction on implementing a program in area schools. Students displayed the “Earth Machine” as a key component of composting success. After the presentation students from Sharon, Mansfield and West Bridgewater had some fun with candid interviews on their motivation to bring green initiatives to their schools. After many years of environmental practice and education I was so inspired to see these dedicated young people share their individual enthusiasm about getting involved in environmental activities. Keep up the good work students! What are you doing in your school? Please share your experience with us.
Saturday, January 21, 2012
Well it is a new year for Green Schools and I look forward to working once again with this energetic group as well as with area schools on their green goals and action plans.
Early in my career as an Interior Designer I realized the importance of a healthy environment which goes beyond fashion, style and color. At that time my young daughter suffered with allergies and chronic bouts of asthma. The American Lung Association’s marketing campaign pictured a young child with an oxygen tube draping down his face and a caption that read “when you can’t breathe nothing else matters” ...well that hit home and I began my work with the ALA as Environmental Program Coordinator targeting local schools with an introduction to the EPA Tools For Schools Program. That was the early 90s and since then the focus on healthier and more energy efficient schools has resulted in the proliferation of dozens of green school building programs and initiatives. Among the recent developments is the launching of the U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools program that focuses on three elements...
(1) healthy learning environments, (2) environmental impact and energy efficiency and (3) environmental literacy
The U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools will recognize schools that save energy, reduce costs, feature environmentally sustainable learning spaces, protect health, foster wellness, and offer environmental education to boost academic achievement and community engagement. The recognition award is part of a larger U.S. Department of Education (Department) effort to identify and disseminate knowledge about practices proven to result in improved student engagement, academic achievement, graduation rates, and workforce preparedness, as well as a government-wide aim to increase energy independence and economic security. http://www.greenribbonschools.org
The U.S. Government Accountability Office reports that at least 25,000 U.S. schools are in need of extensive repairs and more than 10,000 of those schools have air that is unfit to breathe. On the flip side, research has shown that, on average, green schools save $100,000 per year on operating costs. Greening our schools just makes sense and our hats go off to this year’s designees for their practical and forward thinking.
Breaking stories like the recent incident where 12 female high school students in upstate New York developed mysterious Tourets-like symptoms with no apparent cause give reason to first investigate the health and indoor air quality of the school building. Although the cost of third party testing can be daunting, attention to environmental factors is key. In a perfect world schools would be proactive in preventing the problems from occurring in the first place. Taking precautions with everyday maintenance procedures, monitoring occupant habits and incorporating integrative design when constructing new schools are among the strategies that will prevent poor indoor air quality problems and preserve the health of our school age children.