Friday, May 4, 2012

Earth Day: Our Lunch Garbage Problem

My fourth grade counterpart, Paulita, noticed the paradox of how much food we waste at Lincoln School given that we live in one of the poorest countries in the world. On the weekends I've noticed that some of the neighborhood children will dig through Lincoln's garbage cans placed in the parking lot scavenging for food and drinks. Although we are not yet in the position to be actively helping the poor of our neighborhood, we hope to get there. Right now, we are trying to change the culture of the school through awareness and mindfulness. We made it as one of our goals this year to recognize and try to address the problem.  We talked about it with our fourth grade classes and tried to actively reduce our individual and general food waste at the elementary school.

Paulita put together the following objectives and roles for our students:

Essential Question

How can the students at Lincoln effectively reduce the amount of food waste during the lunch period?


Students will create an informational campaign that seeks to raise awareness about the food being wasted.  The campaign will target three key points that include the following.

·      The Positives Effect of Food Conservation

·      Global Problem of Food Shortage

·      Individual Responsibility


Wall Posters

Students who choose this role should have strong research and art skills.  Those making wall posters will highlight an important food issue that promotes the conservation of food, create informational posters about this issue, and then publish the posters in strategic points around the lunch area so that students are reminded of the importance of food conservation.  These should look as professional as possible!

Table Pamphlets

Students who choose this role must be creative and willing to do a bit of research.  You will create self-standing displays that will be placed on the lunch tables with the purpose of creating awareness about food conservation.  These displays should be visible, but not larger than 20 cm in length and width so that they don’t take up too much room on the lunch tables.

Classroom Speakers

These students must be effective communicators and public speakers.  Their main job is to create an informational presentation that explains the mission of responsible food consumption.  This presentation will be formally delivered to the various elementary classrooms.

Food Monitors 

These students will be enforcers of the mission.  In effect, you are the “Conscience Police” and are responsible for reminding the other students at lunch how to be responsible food consumers.  You may want to create a system of monitoring food waste so that everyone can have a visible reminder of how the elementary school is doing with its food waste.

Morning Assembly Skits 

These students will be the eye openers to the whole elementary including the teachers.  Students taking this role have to have excellent acting skills as well as a loud voice.  They have to be creative and willing to work as a team.

News Reporters

This group of students will be responsible for creating a news type video including photographs of our own food waste at Lincoln.  They have to have excellent computer skills as well as filming or photographing skills.

The children signed up for the role that they felt they could best enjoy and contribute to. The above video is a short documentary that the News Reporters made.

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