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University - 2013

Team Name: Kids can Conserve

Campaign Goal:

We had been working on a “Turn Off The Lights” campaign in the previous year. We continued to keep this campaign “current” and added daily electricity monitoring and have discovered everyone becoming much more aware of their habits when turning off the lights and we have found many 100% success days! Our goals arose out of our group discussing areas that various members had noticed or that they wanted to build off from the previous year. We also invited the caretaker to discuss what he had been noticing. As well, we found the first workshop helpful in coming up with some ideas to augment and implement some we had begun. Then we began to look at our paper towel consumption rate which had been increasing. We looked at the ways they were packaged and new counts in the packages. Then we began trying to educate others about using the paper towels carefully. Water dripping from not completely turned off taps was an issue so one of our members created signs and we put them up by taps in the school classrooms and washrooms. A composting program needed to be implemented and so we had meetings with school board representatives, our lead lunchroom supervisor and our caretaker to formulate a plan and roll out strategy.

What did we do?

  • Met often
  • Involved facility operator, CBE experts, lead lunchroom supervisor in our meetings
  • Had representation from all grade groups
  • Building School Spirit and Awareness – we held a Turn off the Heat Campaign and hosted and performed at our Earth Day assembly and the Spring concert.

The Best Part

Coming together as an entire school community (students,teachers,parents) for our Spring concert where everyone was involved in sharing a song focusing on an environmental theme. Also, students loved monitoring the lights and also putting up signs for turning off the water. Putting on assemblies was another thing the group enjoyed doing, as well as making door hanger messages for light turning off and making announcements.


Taking small steps and realizing small is a great beginning and then will lead somewhere. Having patience with the process and realizing that change and noticing change can take time and campaigns can take more than one year and that’s okay; each small step is a success.

Did We Reach our Goal?

We took light surveys daily – we were able to notice more classrooms turning off lights in each of the rooms they might use in a day. We could directly see the results of the composting and enthusiasm build for the program Our word was getting out to our students, teachers, parents and even the community at large (that we felt was a really great result)

What we are most proud of

One teacher said that we were “the voices of those on the planet (other plants, animals, earth…)who were silent and could not speak for themselves.” A support staff member said that the students were “the grassroots for making change and helping the environment.” Our parents said that the concert “ was great” and they “really enjoyed it.” We were proud that others were hearing our messages and becoming more aware.

What we are planning to work on next

Working on maintaining what we have begun and building on our initiatives so that they become sustainable. Continuing to perfect our composting program as well as on becoming more litterless.

Additional Info

Our administration, music teacher, head facility operator, lead lunchroom supervisor and Deborah W. from CBE, have all been so supportive of our work and initiatives all year.