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We are teaming up with the Sustainability Office at the University of Missouri for this project! We will attend football games and stand near the trash cans to help fans sort their trash.
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Trash will be collected, sorted and weighed on a regular day. Findings will be compared to last year's audit and presented to the district.
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We plan on beginning to develop our maps during the months of May and June with implementation of projects during the 2016-17 school year.
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Our project will include meeting with local food experts eg. dieticians, food suppliers and restaurants to learn where our food comes from, how it is prepared, what it is we are consuming and the process of using it in an efficient way.
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We plan to build a greenhouse made out of plastic bottles. We will build a wooden frame and make the walls/roof/door using a 1 and 2-liter bottles and 6ft dowels. We will also create a gardening curriculum for the teachers to use.
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Our Roots & Shoots group will collaborate with the Hot Springs YMCA. We will draw from Dr. Goodall's work to educate our community about the importance of sustainable foods, healthy eating and the empowerment of our youth. We will invite farmer's markets and local healthy food sources to have booths and fun activities for the kids. We will have someone dressed as Dr. Jane reading some of her kids books on the main stage as well as other fun, healthy, physical activities. Near the end of the event, each child will draw what it means to them to be a "sustainable change maker" in our community, and we will compile it into a fantastic book! We plan to create a project map for this event.
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Our project is to sew and hand-stamp tote-bags (students have created lino cut stamps of bees, vegetables and fruit grow at the CSA). We will use made in America organic canvas and learn how to sew the bags. These tote bags will be sold at the CSA, as well a variety of community events, such as the weekly farmers market, at which the CSA has a booth. We plan to donate funds raised to our local fund for families in transition, and to the Unified Art class at our school - this is an initiative developed by Special Olympics to enable students with and without intellectual disabilities to work creatively in unity. Our group is composed of students with and without intellectual disabilities working in collaboration, so this will be a practical skill - learning to use sewing machines - as well as a great experience of creating something real and providing a community service. We are also supporting American organic farming by using organic, made in USA canvas.
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Our project will inform students of the physical and mental health benefits associated with gardening and how they can be change agents in their community. Our students are impacted by crime, poverty, and gang violence on a daily basis so in order to combat these daily stresses, that can hinder their educational experience, our project will provide a healthy escape for our students. Students will be taught proper care, maintenance, and upkeep of their garden by Mr. Lennahan our 8th grade science teacher. In the process of caring for the plants I hope for this to be a meditative experience for them too. Additionally, our project will encourage students to eat more healthy foods by informing them of recipes they can use their vegetables for. Further, our project will enhance our students overall learning outcomes by incorporating a more hands on learning experience through their interactions with the garden.
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Students will be involved in social issues book clubs (especially those that deal with homelessness and poverty). They will continue to be involved independent-partner research activities where students will design their own goals and essential open ended research questions (assisted by the teacher, of course). Students will be involved in a variety of fiction and non-fiction reading from a variety of resources including the internet, magazines, books and more. I hope to have them make virtual or real visits to a food pantry or local institution that helps impoverished families. I hope they can interview people who once were homeless and turned their lives around. Students will participate in letter writing campaigns, create videos, petitions, and conduct school wide assemblies, alerting the school community about their issues and what we can do to help. In addition, they will create their own website that will feature a variety of articles, book reviews, blogs and more about their “Fly Away Home” and “Making a Difference” experiences. They will create a class magazine with feature articles about their causes (and which they can hopefully sell for a worthwhile cause) and build a new "Compassionate Kids" website. We also hope to have a palm oil free bake sale. Our culminating activity will be a musical fundraiser (based on a book about a “humane” cause) that will raise money for a charitable local organization that helps the needy population. In addition, each child will create a “Fly Away Home” scrapbook that will feature their responses to all activities with photos, articles, essays, reflections, book reviews and much more. They will invite the public to respond to their blog posts, videos and hopefully, receive responses to their letter writing campaigns and petitions. And we hope to raise a lot of $$$ with our musical fundraiser, palm oil free bake sale and sale of class magazine. They will continually self assess their learning with frequent personal reflections, partner activities and Socratic Seminar style class discussions that will take place throughout the process.
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Our project will be collecting leftover halloween candy and general candy donations to send to our military troops as a thank you for fighting for our country. I will do this by advertising for members of our community to bring in donations to contribute to this candy drive.

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