Sustainability at ISB

News · May 3, 2018

By Muriel Stallworth, PYP Coordinator

Every day is Earth Day at ISB! You can see it embedded in our units and coming to life in projects all year long.

Currently, our Kindergartners are engaged in their Keepers of the Earth unit. The students are seriously considering the potential in all materials, and they have drastically reduced their classrooms' need for paper and plastic. Saving and reusing paper is paramount, and ongoing production of recycled paper sheets has begun.

In many grades, the connection to nature is an essential focus that aims at developing our children’s sensitivity about the living world around them. In Nursery and 1st Grade, students are learning to observe water and its benefits in their environment. 5th Graders will soon be using their voice to take action and create change in their Sharing the Planet unit, while 2nd Graders will be considering ways to help protect endangered species.

In art class, 3rd Grade students are bringing nature to the ISB playground by creating vertical plant walls in a unit combining art and science. The 4th Graders are currently discovering ways to produce renewable energy. They recently returned from an overnight field trip to the Ashokan Center in Olivebridge, New York. On this field trip, students looked at the ways in which energy transforms matter. There was also a focus on zero waste, looking at ways to avoid wasting resources, including energy.

All year long, the Middle School student-managed Recycling Center for the Arts has collected supplies from classrooms to be recycled and reused for classroom projects!

Kindergarten students on a field trip to a recycling center in Gowanus.

4th Graders on their overnight field trip to the Ashokan Center

Schoolwide sustainability actions at ISB include:

  • Banning disposable water bottles in the classrooms and installing water fountains
  • Putting in place recycling bins in classrooms and common areas to sort plastic, metal, and paper
  • Replacing old light fixtures and replacing light bulbs with more energy-efficient LED ones
  • Installing new printers with software designed to decrease unnecessary printing and paper consumption

We look forward to continuing and expanding our sustainability efforts at ISB, engaging our students in learning about the actions we can all take to to protect and preserve the environment around us.

For Earth Day, made paper out of recycled materials and used it to create these beautiful watercolor postcards.