The Eastside Catholic School Green Team with teacher Clare Jenkins completed two separate projects this year. First, they promoted an anti-idling campaign to reduce air pollution in the community. Actions included letters to parents, website announcements, and electronic reader board notices. The team encountered some reluctance from drivers to turn off their cars. They have persisted and plan to continue the project until turning off the car becomes the norm. Second, the Green Team conducted a “Ban the Bottle” campaign to reduce plastic waste which included a raffle of Hydroflask bottles.
Student Kelsey Webb worked with a King County Green Team specialist to plan and start an Enumclaw High School Green Team. At the initial Recycling Leadership meeting, a group of students created the team mission, vision, and roles. They planned their first project to work with school custodians and administrators to start recycling at lunch. The team worked with all stakeholders, created signs, and started recycling during Earth Week. Kelsey Webb was recognized as a 2018 Earth Hero at School for her leadership.
Green Team leader and leadership teacher Karl Karkainen worked with multiple groups of students at Enumclaw Middle School to teach others what a Green School looks like. Students designed outreach materials and presented them in elementary classrooms. They shared the EMS Green culture and encouraged the elementary students to get involved at their school. In addition, the team used video announcements and lunch-time monitoring to encourage continued waste reduction improvements at their own school.
With the support of parent volunteer Susan Vossler and teacher Jim Clark, the Juanita High School Earth Corp spearheaded an anti-litter campaign this year. They wrote school newspaper articles, gave assembly presentations, used social media, and created a video. The team hosted a park clean-up, school clean-ups, and spirit week activities. The team used a variety of tactics to combat resistance to change. Overall, they feel they increased awareness about the detrimental effects of littering and will continue the project to promote true behavior change.
Leadership teacher and Green Team leader Valerie Olson facilitated several projects with the Leota Middle School Green Team to increase awareness and reduce waste. In the fall, the team used a monster theme to remind others to sort properly at lunch and avoid becoming a “trash zombie.” They created posters and taught others how to properly sort waste. In the spring, the team invited a Green Team specialist to facilitate an Environmental Leadership workshop on contagious marketing. They explored current theories on how to make your outreach materials more interesting and more likely to have an effect.
In addition to helping Tesla STEM High School become a Level One King County Green School, the student Green Team conducted waste audits and calculated the amount of greenhouse gas emissions that could be reduced by composting. The team created an initiative to encourage schools to commit to reducing carbon emissions in accordance with the Paris Climate Agreement. The team also created an app for primary students to learn about climate change through games and play. The team was recognized as a 2018 Earth Hero at School.