Student Leadership Saving Energy on the Sunshine Coast

Two groups of students are leading awareness and energy saving actions this week in School District 46 – Roberts Creek Elementary Division 1 Grade 7 class and Project SPIDER’s distance education class.

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Roberts Creek Elementary

Roberts Creek Elementary School’s Division 1 Grade 7 students host Freezing Friday on March 10th to save energy and find ways to shrink our footprint.  After learning about climate change and energy waste with REDE Energy Solutions, John Lussier’s Grade 7 students wasted no time to plan a day of action on energy and water conservation. First, students used Kill-a-Watt meters provided by Rob Collison, School District No. 46 Manager of Facilities and Transportation and measured energy waste and savings opportunities at school.  They are now busy rolling out an energy awareness campaign – hosting a school-wide energy survey, daily energy saving announcements and a Sweater Day Contest for this week’s Freezing Friday event.  

Mr. Collison will help Roberts Creek Elementary turn down the heat two degrees this Friday to raise awareness and save energy. He is working to support school building improvements across the district with a district-wide goal to conserve 5% more energy each year.  Energy awareness and action is an essential part of this and it fits well with BC’s new curriculum too – emphasizing student inquiry, place-based and student-centered learning.

On Friday, Roberts Creek Elementary is being encouraged to reduce all the energy waste they can.  Students are tracking daily energy use now to compare with Friday’s efforts.  This week they’re busy raising awareness with daily announcements, hosting an online energy survey and a fun Sweater Day contest on Friday.  With Mr. Collison’s help, some local merchant draw prizes will be available to win for participating students and help students celebrate their efforts.

Teacher Kaia Nielsen’s Project SPIDER Grade 7-9 class took the Kill-A-Watt meters’ home, brainstormed ways to shrink their home energy use and set up a self-designed home energy savings challenge.  They’ll share their actions with the broader SPIDER community.

Ms. Nielsen notes, “They’ve had great insights into the power of personal action.”



Similarly, Mr. Lussier’s Grade 7 class wants to share some of the actions students and staff at Roberts Creek Elementary are already taking - while challenging them to do a bit more – whether grabbing a sweater and turning down the heat a bit, flicking that light switch or computer screen off when done or riding the bike to school – each bit makes a difference.  

Division 1 has already had success quickly identifying and unplugging an old near empty refrigerator at school. Teacher John Lussier knows it’s a lot of work, but is quick to highlight “Daily actions really do make a difference – especially with a goal for a call to action.”  Rob Collison couldn’t agree more. “These students’ efforts remind us all that we do have the power to make positive change.”


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