Turn Off Lights To Shine
Phoenix elementary reads by the light of the sun.
Kyrene De La Estrella, a public elementary school in Phoenix, Arizona, is doing its part in helping the planet, by holding a Lights Out Week the week of Earth Day, which is on April 22.
Kyrene de la Estrella will use only its skylights for the entire week. The only exceptions will be if a classroom’s skylights won't open and can't be fixed. Turning off the lights not only helps the planet, it helps the school save money by using less electricity.
You don’t need to turn off ALL your lights to help the Earth. Turning off only a couple of lights in the lunch room also helps, Principal Dr. Jeff Williamson told me. He said Estralla turned off just a few lunch room lights and the students didn't even notice. I certainly didn't and I eat there every day!
Estrella teachers and students are also limiting their use of paper. More than 30 million trees are cut down each year to publish books in the United States, according to eco.libris.com, a group that asks people to plant a tree for every book they read.
My school saves plenty of trees a year. All of the schools from the Kyrene District are having a contest to see who can recycle more during the week of Earth Day. Estrella happens to recycle every day, but contests are always fun!
“I think that the recycling contest is a really good idea," said one student from my school. " Instead of throwing away all of the paper [used during the day] you can reuse it.”
The winner gets a tree planted in front of the school, where all of the other competitors will see it, and sigh wistfully.
Some people think that helping the planet takes too much effort, but a fellow fifth grader disagrees.
“[Helping the planet] doesn’t take much effort," she said. "Because little things make big changes.”
By helping the planet, a lot of schools’ students will be working together for a common cause—to help the planet. That’s what Earth Day is all about! What's going on for Earth Day at your school? Use the comment box below to send your stories and tips!
PHOTO: A student at Estrella Elementary in Phoenix, Arizona, reads by the light of the sun. All lights are off at Estralla for the week of Earth Day, April 22, 2010. (Photo Courtesy Maya Williams)