“What problem can we solve next?”
My name is Sabina Malkani and I am the 3rd Grade Science and Reading Intervention teacher at Bruce-Monroe Elementary School at Parkview, a Title 1 school in Washington, DC. This is my third year teaching Environmental Science using EcoRise’s Sustainable Intelligence Curriculum. The impact this program has had on my students and our school community is astounding.
EcoRise makes environmental education accessible to children at any age. The content is aligned to standards that teachers are required to teach and the projects give me an entry point to talk about climate change with children. I’ve seen student thinking shrift from “How can we do anything to fix problems in the environment?” to “What problem can we solve next?”
Thanks to EcoRise, student action plans now come to life in my classroom. Last year my 3rd graders did an Indoor Air Quality Audit of four classrooms. They discovered that schools use toxic chemicals in cleaning products like Lysol wipes and that teachers and children breathe in the chemicals. They applied to the EcoRise Student Innovation Fund and were awarded funds to make a home-made, non-toxic cleaner to replace the chemicals teachers were using to clean the classroom. The project was a hit and they managed to get every teacher in the school to use their cleaner! They even convinced the Director of Operations to go green by removing Lysol wipes from the student supply lists and using school funds to provide all teachers with EcoLab non-toxic cleaners for the classroom instead. Now that’s an outcome!
This year, my students are learning about pollinators, agriculture, and public spaces. You can follow us on Twitter @teacher_terra to see the evolution of this year’s projects!
Thanks to donors like you, we have been able to expand this program to more teachers in Washington, DC and we hope to start working with teachers in Maryland next year. I invite you to donate and spread the word so that more students are given a voice and the tools to become changemakers in their communities!
We have until December 31st to raise $1,333 and the EcoRise Board and Advisory Council are matching this amount, dollar for dollar. Donate today to double your impact, or if you have already donated this giving season, share this letter with one friend who would be interested in helping cultivate a new generation of green leaders.
Thank you all for strengthening EcoRise programs!
3rd Grade Science and Reading Intervention Teacher
Bruce-Monroe Elementary @ Park View, Washington, DC