ECO School 'We are green, We are cool. We recycle in our School!' &
2018 Union County Kids Dig In: A School Garden Program
Mrs. Kokoszka & Mrs. Torres Room 124
Mrs. Aleixo & Mrs. Ruvalcaba Room 128
Survive and Grow!
During the week February 25th., the students in Room 124 & 128 are working on experiments with plants in their classrooms. Recently they used an Acapulco Pepper Plant to test what would happen if you do not water plants for 12 days. The students observed that on the 12th day the plant looked as if it was dying. They tested their experiment further and watered the plant and watched it come back to life. The students now understand the importance of watering plants to help them survive and grow.
Mr. Kong & Mrs. Delaroca Room 119
Observing Wildlife Behaviors
During the week of February 10th., recycled items were used to build a bird feeder, so students can observe the wildlife behaviors in our area from our classroom window. The bird feeder was part of our school’s initiative to expand our student’s knowledge on the biodiversity surrounding us while continuing to follow our school eco mission “We are green, we are cool, we recycle in our school.”. By observing the birds and learning about their role in our ecosystem, students have a better understanding and appreciation for life around them.
School-Wide Classroom Helpers at Work!
The students at Donald Stewart School 51 are active classroom helpers. The students are always looking for ways to lend a hand and to lead throughout the school day. They develop leadership skills and independence as they take on these roles. Our botanists, sanitation manager, and animal keepers below are at work helping during the daily classroom routine. Teachers create lessons to engage students in decision making such as voting on what to name the classroom pet. February 2020
Mrs. LeFever & Mr. Marroquin Room 134
Mrs. Villar & Mrs. Llano Room 138
During the winter months, the students were curious to find out what animals do when it gets cold. The students in rooms 134 & 138 did some investigating about artic animals. They learned about penguins, polar bears, white hares, seals and walruses. The students also learned that it is important to help the planet by recycling, saving electricity and learning about these other habitats to help save these animals now and in the future. They documented their findings on graphs which are often revisited by the students. February 2020
Mrs. Aleixo & Mrs. Ruvalcaba Room 128
Mrs. Kokoszka & Mrs. Torres Room 124
During the month of January, the students in Rooms 124 & 128 are learning about the recycling process by creating a Recycling Truck. They used recycled art materials located in the beautiful junk bin in the classroom. The students are activitely engaged in this school wide initative to 'Reduce, Reuse, Recycle' by reusing and recycling materials throughout the school day. They place recyclable materials in a recycle bin located in the classroom. Parents are also encouraged to pariticpate in their child's learning by engaging in similar activities in the home.
Eco-School Student Meeting
On June 6th., the Eco-School’s Student Panel was back in action to brainstorm new ways to save energy. They are excited to try walking, riding their bikes, and riding scooters to get around locally instead of using cars to help reduce their environmental waste and save energy. We hope that all parents will help our student’s carry out these initiatives over the warmer months. The student panel also chose next year’s schoolwide initiative to explore Biodiversity. The students will be learning about animals and plants next year to further understand the world around them and how they can help our eco-systems thrive. We are extremely excited to start this new endeavor. We hope all our past and future students are ready to dive into these new topics in September 2019!
ECO-School USA Silver Award
On June 6, 2019 our school was recognized once again for our hard-work in implementing a recycling and energy conservation program with an Eco-Schools USA Silver Award! The students continue to work together to help our environment and help save the planet.
Eco-School Student Meeting
On April 1, 2019 we held our first student based Eco-School committee meeting. The students were chosen by their teachers to represent their homeroom and discuss our school initiative to help the environment. The students then went back to their classrooms and shared what they learned at the meeting. It was a great experience and excellent way to hear what the children are learning and what they want to see in their future.
ECO-School USA Bronze Award
On March 20th., our school was recognized for our hard-work in implementing a recycling program with a very prestigious Eco-Schools USA Bronze Award! We are very proud of our students and staff for their determination to help the environment. We are working on achieving the Eco-Schools USA Silver Award by reducing our energy consumption. Please help us at home by turning off lights and electronic devices when they are not in use and stressing the importance of saving energy with your children. We will continue to recycle everyday in our schools and continue spreading the word about our initiatives throughout the community. Thank you for all your support and everything you do to help educate our young learners to respect and care for the environment.
Our initiative set forth by the students and Eco-School Committee, to begin recycling has shown great progress. After this month’s consumption and waste audit we found that we have successfully reduced our waste by 214.24 pounds! We also collected over 240 pounds of recyclable materials during the week of December 3, 2018.We are extremely pleased and excited with our progress. Our community of students, parents and staff are making great strides towards helping reduce our waste and teach our young learners the importance of working together to save the planet.
October 31, 2018
Our school-wide recycling program has begun. Each classroom has assigned a helper job for a classroom Recycling Manager. The students are using bins that have been donated to sort and collect paper, plastic, and cans. The Recycling Manager helps the students sort the materials and is also in charge of bringing the recyclables out for the custodial staff to collect outside each classroom door. We are very proud of our progress and the responsibility we are instilling in our students to help the planet and our environment. Our recycling schedule follows the city of Elizabeth’s recycling pick-ups. Every Tuesday afternoon we have begun bringing out our recycling. We rotate paper and plastic every other week.
''We Will Recycle''
October 18, 2018
School #51’s teachers, staff and students are going Green! Our Eco-School Committee is dedicated to the National Wildlife Federations initiative to teach our youngest learners about helping the environment. We chose a pathway that includes teaching the students to reduce, reuse and recycle materials to lower our school’s consumption. We have received donations of recycling bins for each classroom through Donor’s Choose and The Union County Freeholders. It is our goal to have every student take part in our school’s recycling program and learn how their actions impact our environment. Please visit the NWF’s Eco-School’s website to learn more about the journey that we are embarking on together with the student’s and the community. https://www.nwf.org/Eco-Schools-USA.aspx
During the months of September and October,the students were very busy upon the start of our school year tending to our new garden. The pictures show them happily harvesting the ripened vegetables and caring for the plants. This project taught our students many aspects of caring for a garden as well as the entire growth process of seeds flourishing into plants that provide food for us to eat. We yielded enough produce to share with the classrooms and we donated a bag of vegetables to the First Baptist Church on Union Avenue in Elizabeth. The children were especially excited in being a part of feeding people in need. We will soon be closing the boxes and prepping them for next spring.
2018 Union County Kids Dig In! School Grant Program
Congratulations to Donald Stewart School No. 51 for being awarded a grant by the Union County Open Space, Recreation and Historic Preservation Trust Fund. Thank you to Chairmen, Mr. Sergio Granados and Mr. Alexander Mirabella for awarding our school with the 2018 Union County Kids Dig In! School Grant Program. Schools with students in grades pre-K through 12 were eligible to apply for a Union County Kids Dig In grant. The grants are funded through the Union County Open Space, Recreation and Historic Preservation Trust Fund.Freeholder Chairman Sergio Granados started this initiative last year as Open Space Chairman to encourage students, school staff and parents to grow healthy produce for students in their own schools and to donate 30 percent of their harvest to local soup kitchens, food pantries, or community residents in need. This experience will have a lasting impact on our youth and encourage giving back to others throughout their lives. Freeholder Chairman Sergio Granados has always been of the mindset that we must find ways to help others in need, and Kids Dig In is a perfect example of paying it forward while also learning about agriculture and stewardship of the land. The grant program covers produce gardens including vegetables, fruits, nuts, berries, herbs and spices, pollinator-attracting plants and plants for pest management. Gardens must agree to set aside 30% of their harvest for community donation and enroll in Come Grow With Us! a free countywide information and resource sharing network for community gardens.
"Green Team" Recycling Program
The “Green Team” - Eco-School Committee began auditing the school on June 18, 2018 to see just how “green” we really are. Each classroom was introduced to the importance of taking care of our school and our community by wasting less and recycling more. The students began the journey by collecting all the garbage they produced in the classroom throughout the day in one large trash receptacle. Then we weighed our receptacles to see how much garbage we accumulated in one day. Now the students will be encouraged to implement and use their own recycling program every day in the classroom. At the end of the 2018-2019 school year we will weigh our trash again to see if we are producing less waste after we have implemented our own recycling programs.