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Apr 19, 2015
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Science > Biology > Ecology > Recycling (85 resources)
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Green Classroom Practices That Save Money

by Emily Ann O'Neil


Page 1 of 4

Going green in your classroom is not only good for the environment; it can save you money, too. These classroom tips and ideas will lessen the impact on your wallet. They'll also reduce your carbon footprint. Use the following information, suggestions, and activities to encourage eco-conscious habits and behavior in your students, while educating them about their influence on the environment.

In this article, you will learn many creative ways to reduce, reuse, and recycle paper in your classroom. Discover how fun projects and simple changes that conserve energy and reduce waste can promote sustainable behavior. You will also find great tips on how to use technology to eliminate classroom clutter and cut back on paper products. The information and advice in this article will get you thinking about the size of your carbon footprint in the classroom and at home.

Paper: Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle

Water, energy, landfill space, and trees are all saved when paper is recycled. Recycling is a good way to help conserve resources, reduce pollution, and soften the environmental impact of schools. Educate students about the process of recycling. Use recycled materials to create designated bins in your classroom for this purpose. Inform parents about the ways in which your classroom is going green. Ask them to consider donating items to the classroom instead of trashing them. Items might include scrap paper from the office, which could be used for notes; stacks of old magazines and newspapers, which could be used for art projects; and old furniture or bookcases, which could be used to create a classroom reading corner.

There's a variety of ways in which you can reuse paper and reduce paper consumption in your classroom. For starters, use both sides of a sheet of paper when making photocopies or printing multi-page worksheets or handouts. Remind students to follow your example by writing on the back of paper when taking notes and completing assignments. Working in groups will reduce the amount of handouts that are needed. Writing on chalkboards and whiteboards during lessons and games is another way to save paper.

Students' scrap paper, old magazines, and newspapers can be reused for notes, bookmarks, and art projects throughout the school year. Use extra newspaper for papier-mâché projects, such as a piggy bank, an Easter egg, and a variety of puppets and masks. Create recycled poetry, Thanksgiving art, a Christmas tree collage, holiday placemats, or a career bulletin board from old newspapers and magazines. Scrap paper can also be used for projects across your curriculum, from art to science. Teach your students about the process of recycling with a hands-on activity in which they use scrap paper to make recycled paper. This recycled paper and other paper products can be used to make a paper quilt, as students learn about American folk art. Scrap paper is also useful for daily writing activities. Get your students thinking about ways to reuse common objects with a writing assignment about recycling. Then, make a list of students' ideas on the chalkboard. Encourage recycling at home by sending this list of ideas home to parents, or by posting it on your classroom website.

Make the most of the resources in your school and town library before heading to the bookstore. Another way to reduce your carbon footprint is to share classroom books with other teachers. By borrowing or sharing books, you save money and avert the environmental impact of purchasing new copies. If you still can't find what you need, see if you can buy a used copy of the book from a local bookstore.



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Highlights

Children's Choice Book Awards
We love books! Encourage students to vote for their favorite children's book, author, and illustrator of the year at Funbrain and Poptropica. Teens can make their picks too. Read the complete list of nominated books, as well as related activities, and get voting!

Videos
Do your students love videos? We have a growing collection of videos (including related activities) for holidays and events, including: Earth Day, women's history, Memorial Day, Independence Day, slavery & the Civil War, U.S. Presidents, handwashing awareness, the Common Core, and American History. Enjoy!

April Calendar of Events
April is full events that you can incorporate into your standard curriculum. Our Educators' Calendar outlines activities for each event, including: Library Week (4/12-18), Volunteer Week (4/12-18), Poison Prevention Week (4/15-21), Earth Day (4/22), Tell a Story Day (4/27), International Jazz Day (4/30). Plus, celebrate Deaf History Month (3/15-4/15), Mathematics Education Month, National Poetry Month, and Youth Sports Safety Month!

Teaching with Comics: Galactic Hot Dogs
Reach reluctant readers and English-language learners with comics! Our original teaching guides to the Galactic Hot Dogs comic series (chapters 1-4 and 5-8), as found on Funbrain.com, will take students on a cosmic adventure while engaging their creative minds. Plus, find even more activities for teaching with comics, featuring many other classic stories.

Poptropica Teaching Guides
Poptropica is one of the Internet's most popular sites for kids—and now it's available as an app for the iPad! It's not just a place to play games; each of the islands featured on the site provides a learning opportunity. Check out our teaching guides to four of Poptropica's islands: 24 Carrot Island, Time Tangled Island, Mystery Train Island, and Mythology Island.


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