Thursday, November 15, 2012

Happy Toilet Tube Turkey Day!

Well, today was America Recycles Day, and since Thanksgiving is right around the corner, my students and I decided to combine the two with some thankful toilet tube turkeys! It was a lot of fun, and they did a great job of writing what they were thankful for on each feather (in Spanish - we're an immersion program).

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Green Classroom Giveaway!

Hey, green friends! Since this Thursday is America Recycles Day (November 15th), and The Green Classroom has reached 200 followers, I think it's definitely time for a giveaway!


One special green teacher will win the following four items:

1) The Adventures of a Plastic Bottle Book
2) Two Bumkins Reusable Snack Bags for your school lunches
3) A Reusable ChicoBag for all your shopping needs (I have this and it's awesome! Can hold up to 40 lbs.!)
4) Paper Recycling Kit - fun activity that involves recycling


Five winners will win a Strawberry Reusable Bag. They are probably "made in China," but I always have one in my purse and it's holding up great!


Just enter the Rafflecopter below. You need to 1) share about America Recycles Day and 2) list one way you are going to promote this day in your classroom this week.

The rest is just optional but it will add more points. The contest ends at 12:01 am (est) on November 15th - America Recycles Day!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Recycled Animals Project

Hey, Green Teachers!

This week my students and I had fun completing an animal guessing game project that incorporated recycling and technology.

First, students chose a mystery animal and created it out of recycled materials at home. They brought it to school, hidden in a box or bag.

At school, we created power points that contained clues about their animals (habitat, food, class, characteristics, etc.). Then, we made QR codes that opened the PP when scanned.

We finally had a reveal day. Beforehand, students scanned the Qr codes and recorded their guess of what animal the clues were describing. Then, one at a time, students revealed their animals and checked the guesses on their recording sheets.

It was a lot of fun, and I loved the creativity my students showed.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Recycling is a HOOT

So, I'm sure you've noticed, but owls are EVERYWHERE. So I thought, why not make a compilation of lots of cool ways that you can recycle while making those cute little birds that everyone seems to love right now. So, here goes:

It's fall now, so what could be better than toilet tube owls? These are by Apartment Therapy.

How about some egg carton owls by My Owl Barn?

Go to Teachers Notebook for a free owl-themed recycling poster by Lucky Girl.

This paper bag owl pinata is just waiting for a fiesta! Tutorial is by Inspired Mama Musings.

Adorable owl-themed desk organizer by Fave Crafts

Love these TP Christmas Owls by Con M de Mujer.

This just blows me away. I want to try it right now! By Recycle Renew Reuse Mother Earth Projects.

These TP owls by Fun Family Crafts are so wonky and cute!

Go to Find Make Do to see many delightful created by Robyn Stewardson out of kitchen metal scraps.

And here's an owl door sign I made out of various recycled materials that is posted right here at The Green Classroom.

Don't forget - Recycling is a Hoot!

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Classroom Recycling Bins Giveaway!

Hey, guys! A classroom recycling center has been such a great experience in my classroom that I wanted to pass that on to another green teacher who really wants to educate his/her students in recycling and making the most of everything we have.

Sooo, if you head on down to the FlapJack blog, you will see that I am giving away one of these 3-bin sets to be used in the classroom as a recycling center. It's really easy to enter, and if you'd like more info. on the bins, just click on the image below.

As you can see, this system has awesome reviews. The winner will have it mailed right to his or her doorstep! And I already have two freebie posters on recycling that you can use to decorate, so the setup will be too easy!

Here's my recycling center. You can click on the image if you'd like to read more about what we recycle, although I think this year we are going to be able to recycle even more - yay!

Stay Calm and Recycle On!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Upcycled Bulletin Board - Green Theme Day 7

My partner teacher gave me a bulletin board passed on to her from a teacher who left, and it was just what I needed. However, it was a little Raggedy Andy, so I googled on some ways to redecorate bulletin boards and decided to decorate mine pretty much redneck style.

What I Did:

1) Put masking tape around the inside edges (don't know why because I ended up covering it with fabric)
2) Primed the outside frame
3) Painted it by brush with acrylic paint
4) Sealed it with enamel spray
5) Used some left over fabric. I thankfully had two edges that were pretty straight, so I stapled those edges under the top edge and left-handed side edge.
6) I pulled the rest of the material taut to the other two edges and stapled like crazy.
7) I think you should use a rotary cutter and all that stuff, but I just used a razor to cut the remaining edges, and it worked pretty well!
8) I found some old red ribbon that was long enough to hot glue to three of the edges ad cover the staples. That was good enough for me!
9) Printed out some Avery labels with a cute design and added them to some green caps.
10) I hot-glued different sizes of green caps all around the border.
11) For a cute touch, I glued push pins inside of several green caps. We'll see how long they last!

 At Goodwill, I found a beige, pretty ugly wall basket. I primed and painted it, and I think it made a nice addition to the board.

I also had a double frame that I actually had painted and polka-dotted two years back. I added some decorations that tied in with my theme and will probably use it to display exceptional student work.

As always, stay GREEN my friends!

Friday, August 31, 2012

Classroom Recycling Center - Green Theme Day 6

Whether it's a standard or not, educating children about the why and how-to of recycling is SOOOO important... in my small, little, humble opinion.

You don't have to waste your money on recycling bins like I did. Just use copying paper bins and make it a class project to decorate them.

Some items to consider recycling in your classroom:

1) Glue sticks (I know Walmart will take them, but you may know of a place that will take them and pay you for them.)
2) Water bottles (Although I encourage kids to bring reusable ones, if they don't, they can feel good about recycling. We applauded two students the other day who recycled their water bottles.)
3) Crayons! Yes, I had no idea until my school's awesome Green Team leader Jennifer Hood (who will soon be posting here with me, yay!) shared this Crazy Crayon website with me that will take in mailed-in bits of crayons.
4) Paper. Check into your county's recycling center to see what kind of paper they will take. In my classroom, if a white sheet of paper has been used on both sides, they will put it in the large green bin you see in the picture. If it's only been used on one side, I have a tray where they will place it, so we can later use it to make books, write letters in Spanish, etc.
5) Obviously aluminum cans although I don't think we have too much of that in schools now.
6) I have recently come across the site TerraCycle  that looks pretty amazing and allows you to recycle items such as chip bags, sharpies, pens, etc. I definitely want to check more into this.

Anything else? Please let me know what I'm missing! A lot depends on your county.

If you'd like the two little circle posters above the recycling bin in Spanish or English, click on the image below.


"We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children."

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Recycled Free Time Display - Green Theme Day 5

During summer cleaning, I came across this awesome business card holder/display that my husband was about to throw out. He really didn't want me to keep it because he didn't think I would do anything with it, but looky-here, I turned it into one of those fun, popsicle-stick free time displays!

I HATE wasting time, probably to a fault. I know all of us teachers are that way, and it's so hard to see students who are content to just sit and do nothing when they finish an assignment. Uuuugh! Do they not realize that when the blink their eyes they will be almost thirty-one!! Obviously not.

So anyways, I created a little phrase poster in Spanish. It basically says - "Take advantage of every moment of your life...That moment you just saw pass is not going to return." ¡La verdad que sí!

The wonky flower I made out of a plastic bottle and molded with a heat gun. I added Avery labels with task ideas to the sticks and brushed with Mod Podge.

To get the poster in two different designs in English or Spanish, click the image below.

Here's to making the most of every moment in our classroom!!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Upcycled Candle Holder for Grouping - Green Theme Day 3

I wish I had taken a before picture to show you the fun transformation that this candle holder went through! This is probably my favorite piece of "greenery" in my classroom.

I found it at Goodwill and it occurred to me that with magnets, some kind of classroom cool could be created out of this.

What I Did:
1) Washed it
2) Primed it
3) Airbrushed it green (took a million coats!)
4) Created circles on the computer (with the right measurements), and printed them out on whole sheet sticker paper
5) Cut out circles and attached them and added Mod Podge and some enamel spray
6) Bought circle magnets and attached Avery circle labels #5408. They were a little big, so I had to press the overage around the sides of the magnet.
7) Mod Podged and enamel-sprayed the magnets
8) Made circle labels 1-12 using Avery labels #5410, maybe??
9) Attached the stickers to green bottle caps.
10) Cut squares out of adhesive magnet strips and hot-glued them to the bottoms of the green lids

How It Works:
* I have two classes - Homeroom Greenleaf and Homeroom Carro. Each child is labeled by the first letter of their homeroom teacher's name (C or G), and they also have a number. In the circles, you can see I split each circle in half and color-coded the two groups of students to remove confusion.
* I placed 10 hanging numbers around the classroom to mark the spots of ten different centers
 (Just a side note, the twirled plastic cables I actually made out of thin soda bottle strips that are curled with a heating gun. It is therapy making those!)
* Every day, if students finish their work early, they will go to a specific center. They will use the candle holder grouper to know where to go.
* The center they go to will change every day. This is easily done by the magnetized green bottle caps above. I already have a student who rotates the numbers at the end of the day for me.

So we shall see! We've tried it once so far. My centers are SmartBoard, iPad, computer, Qr code worksheets, and various math games. Students are given specific activities to do on the SmartBoard, iPad, and computer that correspond with what we're learning at the moment.

So, always think twice before you throw away or donate something. It could be a really unique learning tool in your classroom. And who knows what you might find at your local thrift store. Just carry your hand sanitizer and an open mind, and you'll probably find something too cool for school!

If Al Gore an Charlie Sheen spoke at the same time, it would probably sound like this - GREENING! :P

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