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1-10: GEF Announces National Green Week 2010

Nationwide event is enlisting an army of “Green Keepers,” providing schools with educational resources to jumpstart environmental studies and activities

January 2010 — The Green Education Foundation (GEF) is mobilizing more than two million students to participate in National Green Week 2010, an environmental education campaign scheduled for the week of February 1-5, 2010. GEF enriches National Green Week with standards-based lessons, activities and team projects that are easily incorporated into science, math, language arts, social studies, and creative arts curricula. This initiative is designed to jumpstart a commitment for continuing environmental education and a lifetime of eco-friendly habits. National Green Week 2010 lessons are coupled with the following hands-on eco-challenges:

Green Thumb Challenge –Launching during National Green Week 2010, join GEF and Lowe’s in the largest youth gardening initiative of all time calling on schools and youth groups to plant 10,000 gardens in the spring and summer of 2010. GEF connects the joys of gardening with improved habits in health and nutrition, and has officially partnered with the USDA’s MyPyramid program. GEF links gardening and composting to curriculum across grades and disciplines, and provides straightforward resources to grow gardens of any size, in flower pots or on vegetable plots.

Kick off the Green Thumb Challenge in your classroom by participating in the “Adopt-a-Plant” campaign – a featured program of National Green Week 2010. NASA Scientists recommend using one house plant for every 100 square feet to help remove toxins and pollutants indoors. O2 for You will provide coupons for savings on indoor plants at Lowe’s for all participating classrooms. Register your class at: www.greenthumbchallenge.com.

Waste-Free Snacks - Students nationwide will participate in the largest school based waste-reduction program of all time by simply pledging to carry their drinks and snacks in reusable containers for the week. The goal is to eliminate a ½ million lbs of trash from entering schools and landfills.

Green Energy Challenge - Students will audit their classrooms, schools and homes to find energy leaks and correct them in an effort to reduce energy consumption. Audits and energy lessons for all grades accompany this program.

Recycling Roundup - Students will collect all the recyclables they can and create new and improved recycling programs at their school. Students will learn what items are recyclable in their area, and will be in charge of creating and monitoring a simple recycling system in their own classrooms and school common spaces (e.g. hallways, cafeterias, and athletic areas).

“By participating in National Green Week, students will learn that simple decisions such as the selection of waste-free snacks and drinks can combat monumental environmental problems,” says Victoria Waters, President and Founder of the Green Education Foundation. “Children are in the best position to impact the future of our environment by developing green behaviors that become lifelong habits.”

U.S. Senator John Kerry recognizes the importance of National Green Week as “not only effective in reducing waste but also in providing an interactive way for students to learn about the environment,” Senator Kerry commented. “I urge everyone across the nation to participate.” In addition, nearly every governor across the country has proclaimed National Green Week 2010 an official event throughout their state.

Educators participating in National Green Week 2010 will have access to the GEF online community – the largest worldwide online social network dedicated to environmental education – to share best practices, testimonials, videos and photos with other participants, and to generate excitement and momentum nationwide.

National Green Week 2010 is free! Schools and youth groups are urged to register early to receive important bulletins and updates, visit www.GreenEducationFoundation.org to enroll today. All participants will receive a $10 off $50 purchase from Lowe’s, as well as the opportunity to win multiple Green In–Action Awards and a $5,000 grant.

Sustainability Lesson Clearinghouse

Download, share, and comment on hundreds of sustainability lessons in GEF's K-12 lesson clearinghouse! Find the right lesson, activity or audit for your students by searching by grade level and subject area. Access is unlimited and free to GEF members!

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Visit GEF Institute's website to find online, sustainability-focused professional development courses. Earn a certificate or simply take a course for academic or professional development credits through the Institute's partnering university.

"Be the change you want to see in the world."

Mahatma Gandhi