How Green is your classroom?

We are a nation going Green. There are ads for all kinds of products and services, all touting ways to take better care of our planet. Everywhere we look, there are new ways to reduce, reuse, and repurpose products. My favorite going Green ad is for Goodwill.

Who would have thought it was Green to shop there, but it is, and the stores are capitalizing on the concept to draw in new shoppers! Shopping at Goodwill and other “thrift” stores allows us to reuse items. Further, shopping there reduces the need to purchase new items and the often-excessive packaging that comes with these purchases. This is another assist for those growing landfills.

What are you doing in your own home? Are you recycling? It is hard not to with the many special, color-coded cans most cities provide. It is the same with saving water. Why not incorporate green landscaping ideas into your spring planting this year. There are so many types of drought-resistant plants, and they don’t have to look like, or prickle like, cactus.

It is hard to imagine going paperless at a publishing house, but at TCR we are doing what we can in our offices and of course providing E-books for all our books, to enable you to use pages as needed, thus saving paper and space in your classrooms.

So, how Green is your classroom? Do you have students using both sides of the paper? Do you recycle the paper after both sides have been used? Do you have a recycling area to collect cans, bottles, etc.? Did you know your old Elmer’s Glue bottles and sticks can be recycled? Find out how at Are you ready to do more, but just don’t know the next logical step?

Green classroom ideas abound, and now would be the perfect time to implement them. The 40th anniversary of Earth Day is April 22. It is time to commit to working together to learn more about protecting and improving our environment. It is not just about recycling!

TCR’s new series, Going Green, provides many cross-curricular Green activities for your daily curriculum. Challenge students to brainstorm ways to reduce, reuse, and recycle in their own neighborhoods.
• Read local articles about efforts being made to preserve the environment. Write letters to local officials in support of these efforts. (Language Arts)
• Investigate opportunities for students to participate in local clean-ups and habitat renewals. Help them be part of the solution. (Social Studies)
• Compute how much money is saved by buying certain items in bulk instead of individual packages. Do the math! (Math)
• Compare packaging on pricy items. Is the packaging worth more than the item? Are there similar items sold with more eco-friendly packaging solutions. (Critical Thinking)
• Look into composting, gardening, and other ways to eat healthier foods and purchase fewer prepackaged ones. (Science and Health)

For more great ideas, check out TCR’s many Green bulletin boards, charts and decorative items.

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