Here’s the latest news from secondary school Green Teams!
Brian Healy and the Environmental & Adventure School Green Team have been working on a zero water bottle initiative. In order to reduce waste from disposable water bottles, the team has been learning and doing as much as possible about water conservation. Efforts include replacing inefficient fixtures, visiting local water utility districts, and improving rooftop cistern collection. They share this information with others and hang signs at school to encourage them to use reusable bottles.
Five groups of students at Gibson Ek High School addressed waste reduction-related challenges suggested by the King County Green Teams program for the school’s fall 2017 Innovation Challenge. Principal Julia Bamba invited the program to present locally relevant challenge options and serve as one of the judges for the event. Students had two days to research and develop innovative solutions. Solutions included a school-wide (and potentially district-wide) recycled arts competition, composting kits for elementary schools, an aquaponics display to demonstrate the value of reusing waste, and a paper-free campus. The winning team designed a repurposed fashion project to teach and inspire students to make new clothing from discarded items using weaving looms. Students used material purchased from the Seattle Goodwill outlet store and are creating designs for a Trashion show.
Science teacher Cindy Kress and two all-girl science classes at King’s Junior High wanted to learn more about how to reduce textile waste. A Green Team specialist designed an Environmental Leadership workshop that examines the life cycle of a t-shirt and includes an action project to teach others about reducing textile waste. The workshop drew a personal connection to clothing cycles and involved students in a life-cycle game and identifying of the top ten ideas to help the community reduce clothing waste. The ideas included turning t-shirts into scarves and jewelry and an information campaign about the Threadcycle website. The teams will organize a clothing collection campaign and collected items will either be donated to those in need or possibly repurposed for a fashion show using recycled materials.
Teacher Jane Watkins and the Maywood Middle School Green Team were looking for a new way to inspire students to sort waste more carefully during lunch. They worked with a Green Team specialist and used a video planning guide to craft a fun, informative, and inspiring video to show to the whole school. In addition, the team plans to host a follow-up game to test student understanding of the sorting concepts presented in the video. They are currently creating storyboards and practicing their lines.
The Skyline High School Green Team spent the fall working on a waste reduction project. To increase understanding of and motivation for sorting waste, they put signs on every bin, made instructional videos, and shared information and goals during announcements. A good plan of action helped them overcome some cooperation challenges. Their upcoming projects include water conservation, the school garden, energy conservation, and campus clean-up.