Ontario EcoSchools
Sharing Stories & Practices - Monthly Newsletter

read online at www.ontarioecoschools.org

March Newsletter Contents
1) Earth Week
2) Latest Great Ideas from EcoTeams
3) Submit your EcoSchools Applications Before April 30
7) Le coin FrancÉcophone - Participez au premier webinaire d’introduction d’ÉcoÉcoles de l’Ontario
4) 2011 OTF/PIF Environmental Film Festival
5) Free webinars from Green Teacher
6) Biosphere Video Conferences for Teachers and Students

Earth Day/Week/Month
Earth Day is April 22 and many schools take this opportunity to celebrate the Earth for the day, the week, or even the entire month. Our curriculum resource, Celebrating EcoSchools, has a collection of learning activities for elementary schools designed for Earth Week and other celebrations.

Secondary schools may use this resource as well, adapting the activities to the secondary context.
We have also compiled an Earth Week Activities sheet based on what schools did last year to celebrate Earth Week. Check this resource out if you’re wondering what to do to celebrate!

In addition to the EcoSchools resources, Earth Day Canada has a guide for planning earth week and other resources on their website including this year's poster (shown to the left) which can be downloaded here.

Latest Greatest Ideas from EcoTeams

  • Biggest Loser - Energy Style: two high schools located across the street from each other competed  to see which school had the most energy savings over a week. The losing school had to dress their principal in the other schools mascot for a public event. (Stratford North Western District High School, AMDSB)
  • Tile mosaics above water fountains: environmentally themed tiles created by students were placed above water fountains which were also retrofitted with new spouts to accommodate reusable water bottle filling (St. James, WCDSB)
  • Sweater Day Slideshow: contest winners for biggest, brightest and grandma's couch sweaters, were announced at an assembly that showed a slideshow of the sweaters worn and how much energy was saved on Sweater Day
  • Natural Cleaning Product PSA: Grade 6 students learned about how everyday products effect the environment and they created and marketed their own "environmentally healthy" product. Students video taped PSA and showed at assembly. (Anderdon PS, GECDSB)
  • Medicine wheel garden: this garden is connected to a Native Studies class (SNSS, AMDSB)

Submit your EcoSchools Application before April 30

Submitting your application early means that your EcoSchools board representative can review your application, technical problems can be addressed and questions can be answered. The submit button is found at the bottom of the “Application Summary” page. Please see pg. 22 of the Guide to Online Certification for more details on submitting you application.

Le coin FrancÉcophone: Webinaire gratuit – semaine du 4 au 8 avril

Nous animerons un webinaire interactif pour les conseils scolaires de langue française cherchant à élargir leurs connaissances du programme ÉcoÉcoles de l’Ontario. La discussion portera sur le fonctionnement du programme, les bénéfices pour les élèves, les enseignants et les membres du conseil ainsi que des exemples de pratiques réussies.

Nous vous encourageons à faire part de vos suggestions quant aux sujets qui pourraient vous être pertinents et de vos disponibilités pour la semaine du 4 au 8 avril à nlessnick (at) ontarioecoschools.org.

2011 OTF/PIF Environmental Film Festival
Planet in Focus (PIF) hosts Canada's largest environmental film and video festival annually in Toronto to increase discussion and engagement toward the environmental and social health of the planet. During the school year it works in partnership with the Ontario Teachers' Federation (OTF) to put on free mini-film festivals at schools throughout Ontario. The festival can be conducted in either English or French.

Last year, OTF in partnership with PIF, assisted eight schools in hosting successful environmental film festivals in their communities. If you are interested in finding out how your school and community can host a film festival in your community click here for more information.

Free Webinars from Green Teacher
Green Teacher is offering seven free environmental webinars available this spring. To register go here. They also have archives here of the first four webinars they presented this winter.

Biosphère Video Conferences for Teachers and Secondary Students
The Canada Bisosphere is offering free video conferences and interactive presentations  to secondary schools across Canada  These presentations and video conferences, given in English or French by the Biosphère’s professional educators, encourage young people to be more proactive about the environment, while combining cognitive, sensory and emotional learning.

There are five presentations available to secondary classes: climate change, quality and air pollution, water responsible consumption and biodiversity. More information can be found here.

The Biosphere also offers training sessions for both elementary and secondary school teachers  focused on helping them integrate environmental concepts into their teaching and encourage young people to take action to protect the environment. More information can be found here.

The Ontario EcoSchools newsletter shares the wonderful projects, events and ideas that are happening at EcoSchools across Ontario. Please distribute widely!

Readers can subscribe directly to our newsletter at our website.

The information contained in this newsletter is for information purposes. Please use your professional judgment in ensuring activities meet your students' needs and your school's/board's policies.


Ontario EcoSchools
720 Bathurst St., #206, Centre for Social Innovation,
Toronto, ON M5S 2R4 | 416-642-5774 | info (at) ontarioecoschools.org