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Here's What's Trending for March

10-YEAR ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION - The International Community

Eco-Schools 25 year logo Did you know that when you join Eco-Schools USA, you become part of a global network of Eco-Schools that spans 68 countries around the world? Not only do your students’ actions impact the local community, but they also have an opportunity to become global citizens designing solutions to environmental issues that positively impact our planet. We also host two additional global network programs from the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE), Young Reporters for the Environment, and Learning About Forests. Spread the word, join the celebration, and help us continue to grow and empower students with the knowledge and skills necessary to address the current and future global challenges.


WOMEN'S HISTORY MONTH

The month of March we celebrate women in history and March 8, as a global community, we celebrate International Women’s Day. The women in our lives hold special places in our hearts and in the very fabric of our beings and historically have been a voice for equality, peace, justice, and power. Follow the National Wildlife Federation’s blog as we celebrate strong women.


SCHOOLYARD HABITATS®

Students at PS 250 in Brooklyn Plan an Urban Schoolyard Habitat

student habitat

"Together, we will create a wildlife habitat with the purpose of attracting native species back to our school community and provide our students with firsthand knowledge and experiences of the natural world, thereby fostering their innate curiosity in an outdoor classroom environment.”

How can teachers combine STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) with outdoor learning? Students and teachers at PS 250 in Brooklyn got the chance to demonstrate recently as they began work on a state-of-the-art pollinator garden in Brooklyn. Working as part of a pilot project to expand schoolyard habitat gardens in Brooklyn, students in a 1st grade class were guided by 4th grade students to gather information during a site inventory, while 2nd grade students used the Engineering Design Process to create a 3-D model of their new Schoolyard Habitat. Students then had an opportunity to work together with outside architects on the planning and design process. We can't wait to see the final results! Read the full story on the National Wildlife Federation blog.


FROM THE WILDLIFE GUIDE

coyote in a snowy field

In the March issue of Ranger Rick® magazine, students can learn about Coyotes in the City, and how many urban areas across North America are now home to coyotes. Follow along as wildlife experts learn about the interactions between humans and coyotes by studying the animals that live in the Chicago area. Don’t forget about the extension activities in the March Ranger Rick Educator’s Guide, which includes a printable Ranger Rick’s Nature Notebook Tracks and Trails activity. The National Wildlife Federation Wildlife Guide is a great student resource to support learning more about wildlife found throughout the United States.


ENVIRONMENTAL FOCUS AREAS AND SUGGESTIONS FOR ACTION

Climate Change - Goal 13 Climate Action

Climate Change Pathway

During the month of March, our focus is on the Climate Change pathway and related Sustainable Development Goal 13 (SDG13), Climate Action. Students across the world are taking action for climate to support SDG 13 targets. With global average temperatures rising, it’s more important than ever for schools to take action to reduce their environmental footprint, including working to create climate resiliency solutions and strategies to reduce carbon emissions in their local communities.

Find resources on our website, including curriculum that complements the film An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power. And in case you missed it, the National Wildlife Federation recently launched an interactive story map, Unnatural Disasters: Climate Change and the Mounting Threats to People and Wildlife. The map is a helpful tool for students to better visualize the impact of recent natural events like hurricanes, wildfires, and floods to local economies and wildlife. Middle and high school teachers can also find resources in NOAA’s U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit, which can be filtered by topic and region.

Follow @EcoSchoolsUSA on Facebook and Twitter to get more tips and information related to this pathway and to the SDGs. Remind students to share our tips and information during morning announcements, news programming, and/or monthly communications. #GlobalGoal13 #ClimateChangePathway


SAVE THE DATE - 5.17.19

ESD Logo

Join us as we celebrate the 14th annual international Endangered Species Day on May 17, 2019!

Endangered Species Day — first approved by the U.S. Senate in 2006 — offers biology, ecology, oceanography, general science, and other teachers an ideal opportunity to educate students about the importance of protecting threatened and endangered plant and animal species. Plan a school-wide Endangered Species Day fair with exhibits.


Ways your school can participate:

  • Join others to plant a pollinator garden.
  • Conduct an Eco-Schools USA Schoolyard Habitat or Biodiversity Audit.
  • Arrange a special display in the school library or cafeteria (see special resources below).
  • Invite a biologist, ecologist, marine scientist, or other expert to speak to the school/class about local biodiversity and what people can do to protect endangered species.
  • Work with a community/environmental group on a habitat restoration project.
  • Attend an event at a local zoo, aquarium, botanic garden, or other location.

Depending on your school schedule, you can plan events earlier in May (or late April) or on Endangered Species Day (May 17) itself. Once a specific activity is planned, the class can register it on the Endangered Species Day website or email the information (and your questions) to David Robinson, Endangered Species Day Director. 
  
Be sure to check out the resource materials in the Endangered Species Day website toolkit, including event planning tips, special infographics, stickers, bookmarks, fliers, a banner, a passport, coloring/activity sheets (many of which can be downloaded and printed), and more.

 

ON THE BLOG

Green Street Academy: Where Are They Now?

It’s been less than a year since the National Wildlife Federation and partners worked with students and staff at Green Street Academy in Baltimore to create a 5,000-square-foot pollinator meadow on campus. So what has changed since that time? For one, students have observed an improvement in biodiversity around the campus, along with an increase in the school’s farm production. Runoff in the school parking lot has decreased, and teachers are more excited about using the outdoor areas for education. More importantly, student excitement and passion for the environment is spreading throughout the community. Take a minute to read the full story on the National Wildlife Federation blog.



OUR WEBSITE IS GETTING REDESIGNED!

You talked and we listened! Over the years we have appreciated receiving constructive feedback on ways to improve our program content. In Fall 2019, we will be launching a redesigned Eco-Schools USA website, featuring streamlined access to information and resources related to all aspects of our program. Be sure to read your emails in the upcoming months to stay up-to-date on our makeover.

 

GREEN OPPORTUNITIES

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Happening Near You

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