Through readings, activities and discussions, students follow the story of Coco and her friends and their quest to turn their school green. They look into how energy and resources are being used in different spaces and discover that their cafeteria is the least environmentally friendly. In their investigative process, Coco and her friends learn about the causes of food waste and the impact it has on our planet. They explore ways to cut food waste and plan for a healthier, greener environment at school.
- Grade 1
- Grade 2
In-class or online lesson
Environmental Literacy Domains
Green Guardianship, Health, Resource Conservation, Sustainable Human Development, Waste Management
Environmental Literacy Core Principles
For a summary of the environmental literacy principles and concepts embedded in this lesson series, please visit Green Guardians Environmental Literacy Core Principles.
ELA: RL.K.1, RL.K.2, SL.K.1, SL.K.2, SL.K.3, SL.K.4, SL.K.5, SL.K.6, W.K.2, W.K.8, RL.1.1, RL.1.2, SL.1.1, SL.1.2, SL.1.3, SL 1.4, SL.1.5, SL.1.6, L.1.4, L.1.5, W.1.2, W.1.8, RL.2.1, RL.2.3, RL.2.6, RL.2.7, SL.2.1, SL.2.2, SL.2.3, SL.2.4, SL.2.6, W.2.2, W.2.8
Science: K-ESS3-3, K-2-ETS1-1
This project may easily be extended into optional family discussions and activities around a family’s use of energy and resources and how to make the home a greener place. To facilitate this engagement, a family guide has been created. Teachers may choose to forward to interested parents and guardians.
Four lessons of 30-40 minutes each.
Lesson 1: Time for a Walk
Through a story and related activities, students discuss what it means to be green. They look at the ways we use energy and other resources and determine if certain actions impact the environment positively or negatively. They review what it means to go zero waste, to practice the 3Rs, and to minimize our carbon footprint.
Lesson 2: Problems in the Cafeteria
Through a story and related activities, students learn what food waste is and how human perception and actions contribute to the problem. They discuss underlying problems that result in certain wasteful practices specific to the cafeteria. They also explore ways that individuals or the school can reduce food and other waste that goes to the landfill.
Lesson 3: Show and Tell Time
Through a story and related activities, students think of how they can reduce food waste that goes to the landfill––focusing on reducing the amount of food that goes uneaten and reusing and recycling food waste. They come up with a few solutions and take up the challenge to design a greener school lunch to make the cafeteria a greener space.
Lesson 4: Green School Presentations (Civic Extension)
Through a video, students learn about different ways to turn their school green. Next, they work in groups to examine their schools and find places that could be greener. They give Show and Tell presentations to illustrate the problems they found and to propose solutions.