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When we think of Education for Sustainable Development (ESD)
and try to sum it up in a quick, easy to remember phrase, most people refer to,
“enough for all, forever.” ESD has been a priority for the province of Manitoba,
the Winnipeg School Division and Queenston School for the past few years. The
school’s focus has been on two pillars of ESD, those being environment and
Under the environmental pillar, Queenston School has been
recycling the various items used each day in the course of school business.
Paper would be our number one recyclable material followed by drink containers,
cardboard and juice boxes. The students have been educated in recycling through
classroom initiatives and as the focus of many of the school assemblies. The
school division has provided posters for each classroom which clearly shows the
staff and students the difference between materials that can and cannot be
recycled. Our custodial staff does a great job of separating garbage from
recycling and places them in the appropriate bin.
Also under the environmental pillar, we have recently begun
vermicomposting at school. Thanks to a University of Winnipeg teacher candidate
doing their practicum at Queenston School, vermicomposting has returned to
Queenston School. What is that you ask? This is a program were materials like
fruit and vegetable scraps are fed to Red Wiggler worms where they consume
those materials and turn it into a fertile compostable mixture (castings) ready
to use in gardens, for example.
Vermicomposting is ideal for small spaces and can be accomplished
indoors under controlled conditions. The students will receive an educational
component as to why we compost as well as the how’s and why’s of caring for the
In the area of human well-being, the school focuses on taking
care of the students in the school, assisting local organizations and global
organizations. To assist students with the complexities of human relationships
each day, all staff use the Second Step program including topics as empathy,
making friends, managing emotions, making good choices and solving problems.
Providing assistance in the social-emotional skills area sets them on a path
for social success and well-being.
The school has a Free the Children Committee which has
committed for the past four years to assisting those in need, both locally and
globally. Our focus for assistance over the years has been to Winnipeg Harvest,
Terry Fox Foundationand Siloam Mission, more recently to Cancer Care Manitoba
(Camp Indigo) and the village of Manac, Haiti.
Below are some examples of our commitment to ESD.
Education for Sustainable Developmentlessons were integrated into curricula
including Science, Social Studies, Health and English Language Arts.
The Queenston School Free
the Children Student Committee participated in a process and determined our
global initiative would aid the community ofManac, Haiti.
Queenston School Free the
Children Committee participated in an inquiry process and determined our local
initiative to be Cancer Care Manitoba, specifically Camp Indigo. ($1700