On Friday, April 12th, I headed off to Ecole Grosvenor Wentworth Park to celebrate with the winners of the Watts Off Energy Challenge. Initially, I was just going for the pizza party to celebrate, however, due to all the hype that the Grade 5/ 6 students in Ms. Peet’s class brought during the 6 weeks of the energy challenge, other classes were interested in learning about energy efficiency.
I was able to engage with two classes Ms. Leduc’s Gr 3/ 4 class & Ms. Doxtator’s Gr 3 class. One of these classes learned about the Green School’s program from the ‘Buddy Learning Activity’ that they participated in during the Energy Challenge. This made the students and teacher curious as to what else they could learn.
During my visit to the school, I spoke to several different people; teachers and students; about the challenge. Some highlights from the students were:
- Making morning announcements made them feel empowered and capable of promoting actual behaviour change amongst their peers;
- They loved posters! They felt it was a fun and interactive activity, and they loved how creative they could be; and finally, they loved meeting the other classes virtually. They felt ‘connected’ to them in the same goal of learning about how to ‘save the earth’.
I was also fortunate enough to have a quick chat with Principal Brendan MacGillivray. He mentioned that he was pleasantly surprised at how successful the sweater day went, even though their school is very old and the kids could feel cold during the day. He mentioned how “ironic” is that such an old building could win an Energy Challenge. He was pleased that the whole school knew about the challenge, and was positive about the experience.
As I walked around the hallways that day, I could hear whispers from some of the students “That’s the green lady”, and I received many powerful high fives and hugs from so many students! One student who was in Gr 4 said, “Next year I will be in Gr 5 and I can compete in the competition too!” It is very encouraging to know that the students are already looking forward to possibly having the Energy Challenge run again next year!