Spotlight on Sustainability

WHITTIER, Calif. (February 22, 2016) — Screen Shot 2016-02-24 at 10.48.06 AM Here are just a few examples of the rich conversations students have had across campus:

-The Broadoaks preschool continues to learn about sustainability. The children work and care for the garden.  Recently some vegetables started sprouting, but need more time before we can harvest them. We will harvest them and put together a basket to donate to Soup Hour.   We are waiting for the seedlings to dry and look forward to replanting them.

 -First grade’s focus has been on building an equitable and just society. We integrated good citizenship and influential people such as Martin Luther King, Jr. into our discussions. We also worked on a healthy and sustainable environment. We had workshops surrounding global hand-washing day and have continual conversations about the conservation of classroom materials.  We will work on making our essential questions more transparent to the children.  Essential questions we have posed: “Why is it important to learn about people who contributed to our country?” “What do effective problem solvers do when they get stuck?”

 Fifth graders engaged in The Zero Hunger Challenge. To begin our sustainability unit we asked:  “What are the biggest problems facing the world today?” World hunger was a topic of discussion. We shared that 8 billion people in the world face hunger challenges. Students wrote persuasive pieces about solving world hunger, focusing on the following questions:

  1.  What are the causes of hunger?
  2.  Whose responsibility is it to ensure that people have food?
  3.  How does world hunger affect you?
  4.  What are ways that people can help with this problem?

 -In 7th grade, students brainstormed ideas about sustainability. They researched various definitions, recording what resonated with them. We discussed similarities and differences. Students then developed their own definition of sustainability; brainstormed issues that are going on locally, statewide, nationally, and globally; and selected an issue to focus on. In groups they created posters that addressed the issue, made connections to sustainability, included their own definitions of sustainability and ways to help solve the problem. Poster topics included global warming, access to clean water, the California drought, food processing and distribution, obesity, and clean oceans

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