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Maryland Association for Environmental and Outdoor Education
Green Schools Newsletter
 

Happy New Year! We hope that you all have an enjoyable start of the year. Whether you are a teacher or a non-formal environmental educator we hope that you find the information provided in these bi-monthly newsletters helpful in your efforts to build and continue sustainable green practices at your school.

The Maryland Green Schools Newsletter contains professional learning and funding opportunities, environmental literacy implementation updates, ideas for green schools and important dates.  Please share this newsletter with colleagues and partners interested in the Md Green School program.

If you have comments or Sustainable School practices that you would like to share please contact Gabrielle Cantor at greenschools@maeoe.org .

Laura Johnson Collard
Executive Director
Maryland Association for Environmental and Outdoor Education (MAEOE)




The 2014/2015 Green School Year
 Green Schools Logo

If you are planning on applying for the 2014/2015 Green School Application cycle here are some things to remember.
1. Assemble a green team/committee at your school. Include multiple stakeholders including administrators, teachers, facilities staff, parents and/or students.
2. Set-up a staff-wide folder system so that other staff members can help you collect the documentation.
3.  Contact your local Green Center or Green Leader.  Green Centers and Green Leaders can act as regional support to help you get through the application process.  If you have questions about the application, need help setting up a Sustainable Practice, or would like someone to present to your staff, Green Centers and Leaders may be able to help.  Contact mdgsorganizer@maeoe.org for more information.
4.  Review the timeline below.  Notice the deadlines, trainings and other events.
5. Complete MASS FieldScope as early as possible.  Find out more about this requirement here.

We have online support on the MAEOE website including applications from last year and the rubric used to review applications.  We have scheduled several training opportunities in the winter and spring that can help you understand the process better.  We are excited to hear about your Green School activities, we are always looking for opportunities to share your accomplishments. Please feel free to email us with any questions that you have might have at greenschools@maeoe.org, you can also check out our frequently asked questions (faq) on the MAEOE website.


Green Schools 2014/2015 Timeline:

FieldScope Webinar Trainings:

  • January 27, 2014, 4:30pm- 5:15pm. Contact Cassie Doty at cdoty@al.umces.edu to sign-up
  • February 17, 4:30pm- 5:15pm.  Contact Cassie Doty at cdoty@al.umces.edu to sign-up.
  • February 25, 2014, 4:30pm- 5:15pm. Contact Cassie Doty at cdoty@al.umces.edu to sign-up

See our MASS-FieldScope information page and contact cdoty@al.umces.edu to RSVP.

February 5-8, 2015: MAEOE Conference (Professional Development, Green School Application Feedback, Green School and Green Center Trainings and More). Speak with your administration about possible funding.

March 2015: Application Review Training (All welcome, recommended if applying for 2015/2016 and if you are interested in assisting with the application reviews in April 2015. )

April 1, 2015:  2014/2015 Green School Application Due, instructions and drop-off locations can be found on the MAEOE website.

Early April 2014: Application Reviews (New and Old Reviewers Welcome, recommended if applying for 2015/2016)

May 29, 2015: Maryland Green School Youth Summit, Sandy Point State Park, Annapolis, Maryland. Volunteer, exhibit or attend.  Your schools does not need to be a current Md Green School to attend.  Newly Certified and Re-certified Md Green Schools will receive their awards here at a special ceremony.                                               


2015 MAEOE Conference

Email_bannerOn February 5-8, 2015, The Maryland Association for Environmental and Outdoor Education will be celebrating 30 years of bringing educators, resource personnel, scientists and researchers together to share experiences and ideas. Be part of our 30th Annual Conference!  This year we will have new and old workshops, networking time, internet tools, our keynote speaker Dr. J Drew Lanham and more.  The registration guide and all sessions will be available here.

Please view more information at http://www.maeoe.org/conference.

Conference Highlight:

 


                        
MAEOE's Featured School: Tidewater School

tidewater school2

The Tidewater School in Huntington Maryland is proud to participate in World Soil Day activities with schools and institutions around the world. World Soil Day is being organized by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization headquartered in Rome. 

According the UN website, “The World Soil Day campaign aims to connect people with soils and raise awareness on their critical importance in our lives.” The effort originated in Thailand. On December 5th, the UN held events in Rome, New York, Bangkok and Santiago.  Follow up events were taking place in many countries that week. 

“This campaign fits perfectly into the Tidewater Schools environmental education, science and world geography programs. We are thrilled to be part of this global effort,” said Laura Amin, Head of School.

Tidewater students celebrated by planting a cover crop of oilseed radishes in the school garden beds on Friday. Oilseed radishes help to aerate the soil and keep the ground covered to prevent winter erosion. Students will also learn about what is being done to protect soil around the world.

The Tidewater School is currently the only US school holding an event according to the UN map. The full event list can be viewed here: http://www.fao.org/globalsoilpartnership/world-soil-day/events/events-list/en/

The effort will continue through 2015 which was just named the Year of the Soil by the United Nations. 

 ***If your school has been doing Green School Activities that you would like to share, send a write up of 200 words and a few pictures to greenschools@maeoe.org and your school could be featured in the next newsletter***


National Wildlife Federation

North Chevy Chase Elementary School, a Maryland Green School, has been selected to participate in the US-Taiwan Eco-Campus Partnership Program led by the National Wildlife Federation.  As part of the program, participating schools will have a chance to meet, interact, design, and collaborate on sustainable schools projects.  US and Taiwan sister schools will engage in cross-cultural exchange and joint global projects focused on environmental stewardship and a common commitment to conservation. Together, North Chevy Chase and its Taiwan sister school, Nanhua Elementary, will select a focus area from the 10 Eco-Schools Pathways to Sustainability (http://www.nwf.org/Eco-Schools-USA/Become-an-Eco-School/Pathways.aspx). Participating teachers will spend 1-2 hours per week online, learning about project-based learning and how to structure collaborative projects.  This partnership was made possible through the International Environment Program Partnership between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) and EPA Taiwan (EPAT).


Mid Atlantic Sustainable Schools (MASS) FieldScope
 MASS FieldScope

Check out the new Mid-Atlantic Sustainable School (MASS) FieldScope website (http://sustainableschools.fieldscope.org). This website provides an opportunity to showcase your school’s sustainable (or “green”) efforts! It’s also a resource that you can use to locate other schools that might advise on your own efforts.  It’s an educational tool that your students can use to explore environmental and social studies questions (for example, are sustainable schools more common in some regions and why might that be?).

Note, 
all Maryland Green School applicants are required to add their sustainable practices (formerly called “best management practices” data) into the MASS FieldScope site. Applicants need only do this once every four years, but are encouraged to update it every year.  Not all categories must be filled out to meet the Green School Application requirement. Existing Maryland Green Schools are also encouraged to add their schools to this important resource.  Add your data today!

To find out more visit www.maeoe.org/fieldscope/ or contact Cassie Doty at cdoty@umces.edu

Maryland DNR Storm Drain Stencil Program
 
Storm Drain2

"Storm Drain Stenciling is a service learning activity for your school, community association, 4-H, Scout, or other youth group."

Storm drains were designed to be the fastest and most efficient way of getting rainwater off streets and parking lots. Unfortunately, the water that flows into your storm drain carries trash and sediment from the street, nutrients in the form of fertilizers, and toxics in the form of pesticides, household cleaners, gasoline and motor oil. All of the water in the storm drains ends up in your local stream or river.

Maryland DNR’s Storm Drain Stencil Program took on a new aspect recently with the addition of a Mappler Mobile App from Vertices designed specifically for DNR.  The smart phone or tablet app allows storm drain stencilers to upload their location; pictures; and other information while in the field working on a project. The intention for this map (http://www.imrivers.org/stencil/) is to create a picture of stencil projects around the state completed by students and other citizen groups. Adding to the map creates a ‘feel good’ moment for students and helps them to see that they are part of a team of citizens across the state working toward a common goal. Visit this link for instructions on how to participate: http://www.dnr.maryland.gov/education/are/stormdrain.asp



Professional Development Opportunities

30th Anniversary MAEOE Conference
February 5-8, 2015
Princess Royale, Ocean City, MD
For the 30th Anniversary Conference, MAEOE will be featuring new and old workshops, internet curricular tools, our Keynote speaker Dr. J Drew Lanham and more.  The registration guide and sessions are now available.  Scholarships, carpooling, and our green initiatives can also be viewed on the website.

Please see the website for more details



Maryland Master Naturalist Training
Multiple Week Course Starting in February
Various Locations

Want to be a Master Naturalist?  Instruction is specific to one of three physiographic regions in Maryland: the Coastal Plain, Piedmont, or Mountain Region. The course fee is $250 per person. Individuals interested in becoming a Master Naturalist apply to a Host Site in their region.  Once you're accepted into the Master Naturalist volunteer training program, you will receive 52 hours of classroom instruction and 8 hours of hands-on experience outdoors (60 hours total training).

Please see the website for more details


Scholarships for Amazon Rainforest Professional Development Workshop
Amazon Rainforest
July 1-11, 2015
Deadline: March 1, 2015

The 2015 Educator Academy in the Amazon Rainforest (July 1–11, 2015) allows environmental educators to use and learn innovative instructional tools while exploring one of the world’s most important resources—the Amazon! The program includes:

  • 21st Century Instruction: 5E Lesson Design, Inquiry Explorations, STEM Investigations
  • Inquiry Protocols & Resources: Project Learning Tree, BirdSleuth, Project Noah
  • Global and Cultural Perspectives: Service Learning, Sustainability, Global Education
  • Rainforest Explorations: Biodiversity, Rainforest Ecology, Conservation and Climate Change, and more

http://www.amazonworkshops.com/educator-academy.html



Scholarships Available for Hog Island Audubon Camp, Sharing Nature: An Educator's Week
July 19-24, 2015
Muscongus Bay, Maine
 

Join environmental educators from around the country for a dynamic and fun-filled residential program on Audubon's famed Hog Island, in the scenic mid-coast area of Maine.  Designed for both science and non-science educators, this session will generate exciting ideas for creating and incorporating environmental education activities into your curriculum and teaching. Our inspiring and experienced instructors will share their favorite approaches, methods, and activities for engaging you, and your students, with nature. The National Audubon Society is looking for Teachers from Diverse Ethnic Backgrounds for this exciting annual program. Scholarships and CEU credits are available.

For more information please go to hogisland.audubon.org or email hogisland@audubon.org

 

For more Professional Development Opportunities, please see the Professional Development Calendar on our website at http://maeoe.org/maeoe-calendar/

 January/February 2015
kids-on-sled

In This Issue

The 2014/2015 Green School Year
MAEOE's Featured School: The Tidewater School
MAEOE Conference
National Wildlife Federation
January/February EnviroTip
Storm Drain Stenciling Program
MASS FieldScope
Professional Development
Available Grants and Resources
Awards and Contests

Follow MAEOE

Follow our Facebook and Twitter accounts as well as our blog for the latest information about professional development opportunities, job announcements, and Green Schools deadlines.

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January/February EnviroTip


It's the time of year when homes have their highest energy demand of the year. Heating accounts for 34% of all annual utility usage. Here are some ways to reduce the demand for heat and therefore lower your carbon footprint:

-Check the ducts. To ensure that as much warm air as possible is delivered through your central system, check the ductwork and wrap any leaks with duct mastic.

-Some research suggests that cleaning heating and cooling system components (e.g., cooling coils, fans and heat exchangers) may improve the efficiency of your system, resulting in a longer operating life, as well as some energy and maintenance cost savings.

-If you have a manual thermostat or no thermostat at all, one way to save energy and money this winter is to install a programmable thermostat. When installed and used with the four pre-programmed temperature settings for weekend and weekdays, you can save about $100 each year while staying comfortable.

-Before leaving for vacation, turn down your thermostat (or use a programmable one) so that you don't waste natural resources by generating unneeded heat.

Find out more tips for this winter here


Green Leaders Needed
Do you have experience putting together a green school application? Are you interested in assisting a school or more with Sustainable Schools activities or helping a school build a green team?  Sign-up to be a Green Leader! Explore the Green Leader Page here.  Email mdgsorganizer@maeoe.org for more information


Available Grants and Resources

Restoration Research Grant Program
Deadline: March 19, 2015 at 5pm

The goal of this grant program is to answer several key restoration questions. It is the hope of the funding partners that answering these questions will ultimately lead to increased confidence in proposed restoration project outcomes, clarification of the optimal site conditions in which to apply particular restoration techniques, information useful to regulatory agencies in project permitting, and information that will help guide monitoring programs. While research is needed in the realm of many different restoration practices, this year's opportunity dedicated to key restoration research questions that focus on stream practices, as opposed to traditional stormwater management in the upland or other restoration practices.

www.cbtrust.org/restorationresearch

Unity Gardens' 2015 Spring Grant
Deadline: March 15, 2015

This Grant cycle begins January 15, 2015 and runs through the March 15, 2015 deadline. Up to $1000 grants are awarded to non-profit organizations such as neighborhoods, churches, schools, scout groups and community organizations in Anne Arundel County who support the building of community partnerships through the creation of greening projects, environmental enhancement and education. For more information and to apply, please visit the Unity Gardens website www.unitygardens.org. We encourage applicants to apply early so Unity Gardens can assist you in preparing a complete application for review and consideration.  For questions, contact Barbara Dowling at unitygardensaa@gmail.com or 410 703-7530.

EPA Accepting Proposals for 2014 EE Model Grants Program
Deadline: February 2, 2015

The EPA is seeking grant proposals for the EE Model Grants program to support EE projects that promote environmental awareness and stewardship. Projects under this RFP will help provide people with the skills to take responsible actions to protect the environment. Proposals must include projects that design, demonstrate, and/or disseminate model EE practices, methods, or techniques. Each funded proposal must demonstrate replicability by locating and conducting the project in more than one state or U.S. territory during the project period. Three grants, for approximately $192,200 each, will be awarded.

Please see more here


Chesapeake Bay Trust Restoration and Outreach Grants
Categories include Restoration, Environmental Education and Outreach. Do not limit yourself to environmental education, there may be opportunities in the other categories. Explore the opportunities here.

Green Our Planet Crowdfunding Platform
Green Our Planet is a unique, mission-driven, non-profit funding platform for green projects worldwide.
Raise funds via your community as well as worldwide corporate sponsors.  There are no fees and unlike other crowd funding platforms you will be able to keep the funds you raise, even if you don't meet your original funding goal.  For assistance with this process please contact kelly@monarchsisterschools.org

Find out more here.


Local Bussinesses
Local bussiness may be willing to make in-kind donations of their products.  It never hurts to ask!


Contests and Awards

Cal Water H2O Challenge
Deadline: February 27, 2015

Cal Water H2O Challenge is a free project-based, environmentally focused competition for California classrooms grades 4–6 within a Cal Water service area. Designed in conjunction with NAAEE, the WestEd K-12 Alliance, and the California Water Service Company, the competition aligns with the Common Core State Standards and the Next Generation Science Standards, and aims to help kids develop a core understanding of environmental principles, teach them to care for water, and empower them to make a difference.

http://calwater.com/challenge

UL Innovative Education Award
Deadline: February 28, 2015

In recognition of our world’s changing needs, Underwriters Laboratories (UL), the global leader in safety science, and NAAEE launched the UL Innovative Education Award, a first-of-its-kind initiative designed to invest $250,000 in environmental and STEM education, sustainable communities, and youth empowerment. The program offers recognition grants to increase the impact of existing innovative nonprofit programs in the US and Canada that are leading the way to inspire a passion for STEM education in young people through a focus on the environment. Learn more and apply now!

http://naaee.org/ulinnovativeeducation

Help Save Gorillas and Win $5,000
Deadline: April 3, 2015

Save gorillas and help the environment by entering the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden’s Go Bananas! Challenge sponsored by Gorilla Glue! Answer the call by collecting and recycling cell phones, which contain an ore called coltan. One of the only places in the world where this ore can be found is right in the middle of gorilla habitats. Recycling coltan reduces habitat destruction for many endangered species.

http://cincinnatizoo.org/savingspeciescontest


2015 Saving Endangered Species Youth Art Contest 
The Endangered Species Coalition (ESC) is pleased to announce their 2015 Saving Endangered Species Youth Art Contest, which is open to students in grades K-12. The contest is an integral part of the 10th Annual National Endangered Species Day on May 15, 2015. For more information on the contest, including an art lesson plan for teachers and other resources, please visit, www.endangeredspeciesday.org 

2015 Young Reporters for the Environment
NWF’s Young Reporter’s for the Environment competition is for students ages 13-21 to explore and share topics in environmental journalism through writing, photography, or video. Check out the YRE handbooks for each medium and enter the contest today! 

World of 7 Billion Video Contest
Deadline: February 19, 2015
The contest is open to all high school students worldwide and the deadline for submissions is February 19th, 2015.All videos must include a) how population growth impacts the issue, b) why the issue is important, and c) at least one idea for a sustainable solution. http://www.worldof7billion.org/student-video-contest/ 

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Questions or comments?


Call MAEOE at 443-733-1220

Laura Collard
Executive Director
director@maeoe.org

Gabrielle Cantor
Program Administrator
greenschools@maeoe.org

Anita Ilonze
Volunteer Maryland Coordinator
mdgsorganizer@maeoe.org


 








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