Earth Day is Every Day!

Last month we celebrated Earth Day!

We kicked off our celebration in March with our Cool The Earth campaign. Big thank you to the Lincoln High School students who performed during the assembly!

IMG_1921During the four weeks following the assembly, students made Earth-friendly pledges like taking shorter showers, powering down video games and using reusable water bottles.

Meanwhile in class, K-2 students learned about Earth’s natural resources and sorted different items into three categories: fossil fuels, plants & animals and minerals.

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They decided that some of the objects, like the pencil below, fell into all three categories!

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After sorting the items provided, they searched the garden for other objects to categorize. (Some were quite mysterious!)

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After learning where common materials come from, we learned about where they all go.  First graders learned how landfills are made, and found out what it would be like if we were to turn our beloved sand pit into a landfill.

First they dug a hole to bury the trash…

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Then we emptied our black bin into the hole (to the tune of many mouths squealing “eeeewwwwwww!”)  It was not a pleasant visual!  We all agreed that we wouldn’t want to turn our sand pit into a landfill, and pledged to reduce our waste.  Then everyone helped sort the waste and clean up the sand pit.

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Meanwhile, third graders learned how human behaviors affect living things on Earth.  First, they learned how other animals change the environment.  They listened to a story about beavers, then acted as the beavers by building dams!

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They poured water in the “rivers” that they’d built and observed how their dams affected the flow of the water…

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Then imagined how this would affect the other plants and animals in the environment…

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And recorded what they learned from the activity in comic strips!

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We all agreed that, like beavers, humans can also change the environment.  We read the book, “Is this Panama?” by Jan Thornill, about a Wilson’s warbler making his first migratory journey to Panama…  17318573Then all of the students turned into Wilson’s warblers on their own migratory journeys!  They started in Canada…

IMG_2033 Then hopped their way to Panama!

IMG_2060We played several rounds.  After each round, human activity changed the environment, destroying some of the warbler’s stopover points.  Sidewalk squares marked with an “X” were stopover points that had been destroyed, so students could no longer land in those squares on their way to Panama.

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Our population of Wilson’s warblers slowly declined, until there were so few stopover points, no one was able to survive the journey!

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After playing the game, students recorded the results in their science notebooks.

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All K-3 students wrapped up the Earth Day unit by making Earth Day flags.

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Parents Jackie Fung and Raelynn Hickey generously donated their time to attach all 264 flags to string so we could display them.  Big thank you to both of them!  The flags look great in our garden!

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Kindergarteners continued their Earth Day celebration by releasing monarch butterflies!  Ms. Chiu-Sakamoto generously donated caterpillars from her garden.  The students observed the caterpillars as they turned into chrysalises, and finally, into butterflies!

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It was very exciting watching them fly away!

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One even stayed with us for several minutes.  Many students declared, “It’s because it likes us too much!”

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We celebrated the butterflies with a garden snack.  Students made “caterpillars” out of Cheerios, then stuck them to sorrel leaves with honey.

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After making the caterpillars they wrapped them up into chrysalises and ate them!

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4th and 5th graders were not excluded from the Earth Day festivities- they celebrated by making recycled paper!

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They pressed pulp (newspaper + water) into shapes…

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Then added flower petals for decoration. Some also added flower seeds with plans to plant their paper later!

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On April 22 (Earth Day!) we had a bike/roll/walk to school day (Congratulations to Ms. Chow’s class for winning the Golden Sneaker Award!)…

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And also announced the results from our Cool The Earth campaign.  Our students made 1,621 Earth-friendly pledges, saving 1,084,541 pounds of carbon!

While celebrating on April 22, one student asked, “Isn’t every day Earth Day?” Here at Alice Fong Yu, we definitely believe this is true! All year we’ve been learning ways to help protect our planet, with help from SF Environment.

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They presented two great assemblies (“Our Water” and “Food to Flowers”) and trained our compost monitors.

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Our compost monitors have set an example all year, and everyone has done a great job taking steps to protect our planet.

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Thank you to SF Environment for helping our school celebrate Earth Day every day!

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2 Responses to Earth Day is Every Day!

  1. Wow!! Tremendous work everyone! What great projects and lessons!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sophie Wallace says:

    Excellent post!

    Sophie

    >

    Liked by 1 person

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