EcoSchools Newsletter May 2018
Doors Open: Platinum EcoSchools Tours

Proven environmental practices to inspire and encourage you and your colleagues! 

A Platinum EcoSchools Tour is an informal opportunity to share with colleagues how a school takes action to engage students as eco-leaders, teaches students about, for and in the environment and strives to reduce its environmental impact through whole school practices and routines. The school tour highlights areas of strength and growth, so that visiting participants can learn from the host school's experiences.

Platinum EcoSchools Tours:

Several Platinum EcoSchools are opening up their doors after school to share best practices, highlight EcoSchools certification "look-fors", and set aside time for questions and discussion so that you and your team can learn how to build or enhance your environmental program.  

Register on Key to Learn for any of the following sessions:

Thursday, May 3rd 4:00 - 5:00 pm Dr. Norman Bethune CI

Judy Tutchener
Wednesday, May 9th 4:30 - 5:30 pm
Hollywood PS Andrew Steele
Wednesday, May 16th 4:30 - 5:30 pm
Cresthaven PS Nancy Gillis
Wednesday, May 23rd 4:30 - 5:30 pm
Claude Watson School for the Arts

Ian Handscomb
Thursday, May 31st 4:30 - 5:30 pm
McKee PS Bonnie Chu

Questions? Contact 
June 30th: Application Deadline for FREE bike racks

EcoSchools Section 6: Question 6.2

Bike Rack Program

Increase sustainable transportation at your school with new bike racks! All schools are eligible to apply, but will have to demonstrate need and evidence of prior efforts to promote sustainable transportation.  For more details and to access the application form, visit the  EcoSchools Cycling Supports webpage.

Deadline to apply for bike racks: June, 30th

Get ideas on how to build a program at your school that supports active, safe, and sustainable transportation among students and staff. From targeted communications to bike rodeos, there are many ways in which you can promote sustainable transportation within your school and community.

Questions? Contact Serita Lawson
OISE / UofT Environmental and Sustainability Education Speaker Series
EcoSchools Section 5: Questions 5.2, 5.3, 5.4, 5.5, 5.6, and 5.7 and Section 6: Questions 6.3 and 6.5

TDSB educators are invited to participate in  OISE / UofT Environmental and Sustainability Education's Speaker Series. Be inspired by a wide range of topics and expertise broadening your knowledge of environmental and ecological literacy. Participating TDSB educators and OISE teacher candidates will have opportunities to deepen their EcoSchools network as well as meet and learn beside other passionate practitioners. 

Most events are free, however, TDSB staff please register on  Key to Learn for each session.

Contact: Pam Miller at for more information.

Spring 2018 Events:

Project WET Workshop
Presenter: Bonnie Anderson, Project WET Foundation
Date: Saturday, May 26th 
Time: 10:00 am - 3:00 pm
Location: UTS 371 Bloor St. W
Cost: Free
Register on Key to Learn by May 21st

Are you looking for fresh ways to integrate water education into your teaching?  Project WET is a fun, hands-on, inquiry-based approach for K-12 educators. This interactive daylong workshop, led by experienced outdoor educator Bonnie Anderson, will introduce you to some of the issues surrounding water and to activities to address them with students. Participants will receive the Project WET Activity Guides as part of the workshop.

Indigenous Education in the Humber Valley Workshop
Presenter: Alan Colley
Date: Saturday, June 9th
Time: 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
Location: Humber River,  Étienne Brûlé Park
Register  on Key to Learn by June 4th

Join Indigenous knowledge-keeper Alan Colley for a half-day program of land-based learning in the Humber Valley. Alan will lead a Teaching Circle and walking tour to share his extensive knowledge of the plants and wildlife along the river. Given its rich history and ecology, the Humber River is an excellent place to learn about Indigenous Ways of Knowing, science, geography, and so much more! 
Pollinating Partnerships - Tuesday, June 12th
EcoSchools Section 6: Questions 6.3

Who has the best EcoSchools ideas?  What are your eco-victories this year? Join us as TDSB teachers share the benefits and challenges of environmental learning in their classrooms, and celebrate the success stories of EcoSchools' teams across Toronto. 

This annual year-end event includes a Learning Carousel, Partner Exhibits, and a Keynote talk about the power of nature-based learning from Bill Kilburn

This free event is open to all TDSB staff.

R egister on  Key to Learn  and search Pollinating Partnerships.

Date: Tuesday, June 12th
Time: 4:30 - 6:30 pm
Where: OISE Library, 252 Bloor St. W
Questions: Contact
A light dinner is provided -- please bring your own dish ware. 
Environmental Education AQ Course--Parts 1, 2 & 3
EcoSchools Section 5: Questions 5.2, 5.3, 5.4, 5.5, 5.6, and 5.7

Want to expand your knowledge and practice of environmental education? 

The TDSB has partnered with OISE to offer university certification courses in Environmental Education to Early Childhood Educators, elementary and secondary teachers. These interdisciplinary AQ courses take an inquiry-based, experiential approach to explore what it means to learn about, for, and in the environment using both in-class and on-line learning.
TDSB participants are eligible to receive a subsidy after completion of each course. 

Environmental education is central to teaching and learning in the 21st century; climate change, resource depletion, and environmental degradation are all pres sing contemporary societal issues that require an educational response. This course provides an engaging introduction to teaching and learning in environmental education for both elementary and secondary teachers through a combination of lectures, workshops, outdoor and experiential learning, field trips and guest speakers. It offers maximum flexibility for participants' learning needs through a blended course format (in-class and on-line hours).

Summer Session: Part's 1, 2, and 3 are being offered at the University of Toronto St. George Campus. Part 1 is taught by Hilary Inwood, OISE Lecturer, Part 2 is taught by Pam Miller, TDSB EcoSchools Instructional Leader and Part 3 is taught by Beth Lisser, VP David Suzuki SS.

Delivery: 125 Hours Blended Part 1 and 2: In-Class July 3rd - 13th Monday - Friday,  9:00 am-3:30 pm. Online July 3rd - 20th. 
Part 3: In Class July 5th - 17th Monday - Friday, 9:00am-3:30pm. Online July 3rd - 20th.

Register with OISE by June 26th, 2018.

Contact to ensure a spot on the TDSB subsidy list.
Get Outside Month
EcoSchools Section 5, Questions 5.3, 5.4, 5.5, and 5.6, Section 6, Questions 6.5, & 6.6

Connecting our students to nature

May 2018, is the seventh annual  Get Outside Month  at the TDSB!
Check out the  theme-based, curriculum--connected activities each day in the month of M ay on the  Toronto Outdoor Education Schools (TOES) website . These lessons, designed to su pport teachers teaching in the outdoors, focus on inquiry, active citizenship, and making connections to the real world and are ideal for any school ground or local community. Stay in the loop and follow  @TOES_TDSB   on Twitter!

Inspired by Richard Louv's Last Child in the Woods, this exciting initiative encourages teachers to trade their classroom for the schoolyard to Take Learning Outdoors. According to Louv, "direct exposure to nature is essential for healthy childhood development and for the physical and emotional health of children and adults".  

Why the focus on Get Outside? As the staff at any TDSB Outdoor Education Centre know, today's students are less connected to the world around them and have, generally speaking, less experience being outside than students from 15 or even 10 years ago. For today's "digital natives", the need to reconnect with the real world is great.   Green School Yard Network in the UK, offers 10 top benefits for outdoor classrooms including shifting the focus of inquiry research from secondary to primary sources. Check out all ten and GET OUTSIDE!

May is also a great time to take the Suzuki Foundation's One Nature Challenge. Spend 30 minutes a day in nature for 30 days to kick-start a nature habit that lasts all year-round.
Register now for Bike to School Week
EcoSchools Section 6: Questions 6.2 and 6.5

Let's get rolling!
Join students and teachers across the province in celebrating Bike to School Week from May 28th to June 1st. The week beginning on the last Monday of May is the official Bike to School Week at the TDSB.

About the event:

Bike to School Week is a celebration of active transportation and biking and builds on the success of  Bike Month (May 28th - June 30th). Schools participate in Bike to School Week by encouraging their students to walk and roll to school, and by holding events both inside and outside the classroom to promote the benefits of active transportation. Visit the  Getting Started web page for ideas on how to promote and implement your event.
Campaign incentives:
Be sure to register soon TDSB schools that  register by Friday, May 4th, will be eligible to receive a large reusable  Trip Tracking Poster(while supplies last). The tracking poster will help recognize students who come to school by an active mode of transportation and to count their trips. 
How schools register: Visit the  Bike to School week website and complete the registration form. *Schools that register their events and complete the school reporting survey by Friday, June 15th will receive a certificate of participation.
Register now for the EcoLeague Youth Forum
EcoSchools Section 5: Questions 5.2 and 5.3, 5.4 & 5.5; Section 6: Question 6.5

Pre-Register now!
At LSF's Youth Forums, students are inspired to take action through keynotes and workshops delivered by local experts who are making change in their communities. They will leave
 empowered with innovative ideas, skills, and the confidence to undertake their own projects. Educators also learn to support student action projects while meeting curriculum requirements using transformative learning strategies. A fun and inspiring day for students and teachers alike!

For questions contact Joanne Huy at or 1-877-250-8202.

Grades: 5-8
Location: Milton 3M Sales Centre
Address: 2751 Peddie Road, Milton, Ontario
Date: October 16th, 2018
Time: 8:30 am - 2:45 pm
Cost: FREE!
Release Time: Funding to cover the release time for 1 teacher per school on a first come, first served basis for up to 25 schools
Stay connected--follow us on twitter and share your great environmental initiatives with us!  @EcoSchoolsTDSB