Growing Greener Schools on WXXI-TV

Growing Greener Schools on WXXI-TV

Thu, 04/01/2010 - 10:00pm

Growing Greener Schools takes a look at green education and engaging students in green schoolyards and gardens, transportation, recycling, stewardship and more.

Growing Greener Schools airs Thursday, April 1 at 10 p.m. on WXXI-TV (DT21.1/cable 1011 and 11).

Why?Considering that one in five Americans spend their days in K-12 schools, the green-school movement is positioned to become a significant contributor to improving our nation's environmental and public health. The challenge is in establishing green school definitions and standards that will meet the needs of under-represented people, struggling schools, diverse communities and geographical regions.

How?The Media & Policy Center is conducting a nationwide search among dozens of school districts and advisory councils to glean data, requirements and criteria for what constitutes a green school. Many steps will be filmed, including water and energy use, student engagement and education, green schoolyards and gardens, transportation, recycling, stewardship and more.

Growing Greener Schools is a broad-based initiative comprised of an hour-long PBS program outlining the steps necessary to green our schools and explaining the educational, physical, economic and healthful benefits that will result from this process. The Media & Policy Center also intends to produce a series of locally televised town hall meetings, a series of "how-to" Community Action Guides, and a Video Resource Library to support the PBS program.

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Green Schoolyards

Many schools across the country are installing outdoor classrooms on school grounds. These experiential learning laboratories engage students using primary source materials (i.e. plants, water flow systems, renewable energy demonstrations) rather than learning from a text or multi-media presentation. The cost of an outdoor classroom is modest, compared to most ricks and mortar capital projects, and can be done in phases. The design process itself can be a valuable learning experience. Working in their own mini-ecosystem teaches kids the fundamentals of systems thinking and will prepare them as we try and solve a host of complex environmental problems facing our planet. Hands-on learning also allows students with different learning styles to participate and blossom.

For information visit the Green Schoolyard Network's blog at http://greenschoolyardnetwork.org