By Robin Alberti
Fourth grade students at Proctor Elementary show their “up-cycled” brown bags.
PROCTOR — On Earth Day last Wednesday, Proctor Elementary School teacher Danielle Fagan took the opportunity to put her fourth grade students’ knowledge to practical use. Mrs. Fagan presented the students with this challenge: how could they do something good for the environment and give back to their community at the same time?
Students began by researching useful Earth Day facts for what they could do to help keep the earth clean. Throughout the week her students read those tips over the intercom system during morning announcements. When The Mountain Times visited the classroom Wednesday, hands went up fast when students were asked to share some of their findings.
“Recycling one glass bottle can power a computer for 30 minutes,” Jacob said. Ryden added, “You should recycle as much as you can. Recycling one ton of paper can heat a home for 6 months!” Timmy chimed in with, “It helps to save trees when you don’t waste paper. Recycling a three-foot high stack of newspapers saves one tree.”
Another part of the Earth Day unit was to “up-cycle” recyclable brown paper bags, decorating them with drawings and sayings about recycling and protecting the environment. The students then delivered them to West Street Market to be used to for bagging customers’ purchases.
The students were very enthusiastic about this project. When asked what their favorite part of the assignment was, many students said it was coloring and drawing on the bags and teaching people about Earth Day. Others liked that they got to walk to the store with their friends during school.
“It is nice when we can tie different units together,” Fagan said. The kids gained knowledge about the environment, their role in protecting the earth, and they had an opportunity to educate others with simple tips on how to give back to their community.
Customers at West Street Market were treated to bags decorated by the students, with some great facts about protecting the environment thrown in.