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Green Classroom: Saving Energy

Another great post about energy saving from Megan, a Teaching Assistant in London who recently moved over from Canada to work with Protocol Education.

I know what you’re probably thinking. Here comes another blog entry from the tree hugger.  Well this one not only contains vital energy saving tips, but money saving tips for your home and your classroom. 

The first and probably easiest way to save energy is to turn off appliances and lights when not in use.  Makes sense, right?  Well, you might be surprised to know that many of your electronic devices are still on even when you think you’ve turned them off.  These appliances are often referred to as ghost or phantom appliances because they use electricity when you’re not expecting to.  Sneaky little things.  Anyway, a good way to tell if you have one of these appliances is to see if they have a light on them.  For example, most DVD players have a light that turns green when it’s on which switches to red when it is supposedly off.  However, what do you think is powering that little light?  Magic red light fairies that contain bioluminescent properties?  As awesome as that would be, that is sadly not the case.  It’s electricity.  The best way to ensure that your appliances aren’t being sneaky energy wasters is by unplugging them from the socket.  The only annoying bit about that is that it might not be in a convenient location.  The solution is just to get an extension cord device for it.

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Electric lighting has changed how humans live and is great for several things, including safety.  Lights have been integrated into our lives to such a degree that it is almost impossible to imagine living without them.  Since this is the case, the best way to make lights more efficient is to turn them off when not in use (not surprising) and to change over the bulbs to CFL or LED ones.  These can save you a lot of energy in your home and can actually save you money over time on your electric bill.  Schools are also beginning to take notice of this and are changing over bulbs and making sure that teachers turn their lights off before leaving at the end of the day.  Some lights have motion sensors in them which will turn off when nobody is in the room.

Recycling is another easy thing that we can do in our homes and in schools.  There is always paper, plastic and glass that are recycled, but you can also recycle food waste.  If you or your school has a compost waste bin, then you can collect it for that therefore creating less waste to be put in landfills.  Kids love getting involved in recycling because it gives them a sense that they are doing something good for the planet.  Obviously, if we could reuse things like bottles, that would be even better than recycling, but either way is better than just throwing it into the bin.  Along the same lines of that, you can have students collect things from home like cereal boxes, plastic bottles, etc., and then create crafts with them.  There are wide varieties of craft ideas that can be found online and through environmental organizations.  Remember: One person’s trash can be another person’s treasure, as cliché as that sounds. 

No matter what you do at home or in your classroom, chances are you can integrate some sort of environmentalism into it.  The environment will thank you for it! 

Happy energy saving!

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Green Classroom Blogs by Megan:

An unexpected Experience

Out to the Garden



Tags: Megan, TA, Teaching Assistant, Green Classroom, Energy Saving, Protocol Education

Category: Australian Teachers

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