Chestermere students win environmental Action Challenge Award
CALGARY -- A group of Grade 4 students at Our Lady of Wisdom School in Chestermere accepted an award Thursday for taking environmental action.
It was presented by the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS).
Vanessa Bilan is an environmental educator with CPAWS and visits schools all over southern Alberta.
“So not only did they do the environmental actions, they were able to teach science through it, math through it, social studies and that really set them apart,” said Bilan.
The CPAWS Action Challenge is open to classes and youth teams from all over the province. They apply then submit their green actions, which earn points. The team with the most points earns the grand prize.
Amelia Ostick teaches the winning class.
"Each initiative or action that you do, it depends on how much it saves the environment or helps or shares awareness," she said.
"And it has to be student-lead as well, so they were coming up with ideas, they were doing a lot of the research and I was just there to help."
Ostick says part of the Grade 4 science curriculum is Waste in Our World, and she was surprised at how environmentally conscious her students were, even before they began tracking actions.
Students came up with all kinds of environmentally friendly initiatives, like using water bottles and reusable lunch containers. They also put up signs in school to help other students be planet friendly.
"We recycled all the markers that were dead and we sent them to Crayola to get them returned into clean fuel instead of staying in the land fill for over a thousand years," said nine-year-old Ian Godley.
Avenn Babysh is also nine-years-old and says she get frustrated when she sees someone harming the environment on purpose.
“Say you’re going through a drive through and you see someone in front of you at the window (and) someone throws some garbage on the grass,” said Babysh.
Included with the Action Challenge Award is $500 that the class wants to use to go on a nature field trip.
The Grade 4 students say they’re not too young to make a difference in the environment and spread the word to the rest of the school, and even at home, on how to be better stewards of the planet.
"I'm so proud of these kids, they worked so hard this whole time, they wanted to really help," said Ostick.
Learn more about the CPAWS Action Challenge online.