Every Day is Earth Day at GNS
As you know, today is Earth Day. In recognition of this annual global event, GNS students have spent the last week participating in our very own "Earth Week." For the last five days, we have been reflecting on the ever-increasing importance of taking care of the planet we all share, and taking part in activities that demonstrate the difference we are able to make, both individually and collectively. Stories of the various educational experiences enjoyed at each campus can be found throughout GNS News, on the school website and on our various social media platforms. In addition to the stories shared on these platforms, students also:
- Were challenged by the Kindergarten classes to reduce garbage
- Learned about garbage free lunches from the Grade 1s
- Were challenged to keep the lights off for the day by the Grade 2s
- Participated in a planting day on Earth Day for the Grade 3s plant unit of inquiry
- Committed to beach cleanup and overall stewardship of our environment across the Junior School
- Walked, biked or bussed to school with encouragement from the Grade 5s
- Had 'zero paper' classes, kept the lights off all day and brought garbage free lunches at the Middle School
- Explored lines of inquiry specifically related to environmental concerns for Culturefest in Grade 6
- Cultivated a beautiful organic garden on the Pemberton Woods Campus
- Learned about old growth forests on Vancouver Island through a presentation by the Ancient Forests Alliance organized by the Senior School Round Square Committee
- Held a bake sale with donations going towards the Ancients Forests Alliance through the Senior School LEAP club
- And much more!
It's important to note, however, that while this week is specifically dedicated to learning about the environment and the great fortune we have to live in a part of the world so awash with natural beauty, in reality, every day is Earth Day at GNS. Issues like sustainability, environmentalism, conservation and preservation are routinely addressed and considered. From a Middle School initiative that advocates banning the bag, to the Junior School's commitment to promote garbage-free lunches, to Senior School Outdoor Ed trips that encourage our students to experience and appreciate nature, to educational visits about the environment from GNS alumni, to learning about water conservation, students understand that small changes can make significant impacts. The adaptability of the IB curricula allows our talented faculty to weave environmental concepts into their various courses, allowing those concepts to be thoroughly investigated. The discoveries made in any number of areas can be truly profound.
As you explore this week's GNS News, I invite you to think of ways that you can continue this conversation with your child in your own homes. The world our young people will inherit from us will be one wrought with difficult considerations and decisions. There is perhaps no better way to prepare them for the challenge ahead than by actively embracing the words of Mahatma Ghandi—to "be the change you wish to see in the world."
Happy Earth Day!
by Glenn Zederayko, Head of School