- MAJESTA Trees of Knowledge competition calls on Canadians to vote for their favourite school and get a chance to win $10,000 -
TORONTO, March 28, 2012 /CNW/ - Ten finalists remain in the MAJESTA Trees of Knowledge competition and it's now up to Canadians to get online and vote to determine which school will receive a $20,000 customized outdoor classroom.
Schools from across the country submitted detailed applications to the competition and a panel of expert judges, including representatives from MAJESTA, the soft and green choice for household paper products, Tree Canada and Focus on Forests, narrowed the submissions down to a list of ten finalists. From these finalists, the winning school will be decided by a public vote at www.majesta.com, running from March 28 to May 11, 2012. As an incentive for Canadians to participate in selecting a winning school, every person who votes also has the opportunity to enter for a chance to win a $10,000 cash prize from MAJESTA.
"Last year's winner did an outstanding job rallying the community to get involved with the competition. With the fantastic applications submitted and passion exhibited by the schools this year, it should be another close and exciting race," says Jim Schedler, Vice President of Marketing for MAJESTA. "Ultimately, this competition aims to get Canadian schools and communities talking about the importance of protecting and preserving the environment, environmental education and making time to get outdoors."
Each of the schools participating in the Trees of Knowledge competition created a unique design for their own outdoor classroom, including elements such as gardens, nature trails, shaded study areas and opportunities for hands-on learning. Encouraging schools to take learning outdoors, each outdoor classroom will create an inspiring and interactive space for students to learn about nature, the environment and sustainability.
The ten finalist schools represent communities from coast to coast:
- École Beaubassin - NS
- Sussex Elementary - NB
- Killaloe Public - ON
- Thor College - ON
- Brookside Public - ON
- Hilson Avenue Public - ON
- C.E. Broughton Public - ON
- Central Elementary - SK
- Homesteader Elementary - AB
- Pleasantside Elementary - BC
École Beaubassin (Grades K - 5)
École Beaubassin has created a committee of students, faculty and parents to help transform their concrete school yard into a green space for students to read, write and reflect in a relaxing outdoor environment. École Beaubassin aims to develop a responsible student body that cares for the environment and continues to protect it into adulthood.
Sussex Elementary School (Grades K - 5)
Sussex Elementary School is working to educate students about the environment and environmental stewardship through the creation of an "Acadian Garden" with flowers, shrubs and tree species. As the first phase of brushing and path construction is complete, the school aims to add new species over the next five years and make a natural area accessible to students and teachers for education and recreation purposes.
Killaloe Public School (Grades K - 8)
Killaloe Public School encourages students to interact with and learn about their interconnectedness to the environment. As a focal point for the naturalization of the schoolyard, the outdoor classroom would create a positive learning environment promoting resource stewardship, physical activity and each student's connection to their natural surroundings. With an inclusive community-based approach, the outdoor classroom would be open to other schools in Renfrew County.
Thor College (Grades Pre-K - 8)
Thor College is one of the only remaining "country" schools and strives to use the 100-acre facility as an outdoor learning environment. Helping students learn about the world they live in, Thor College's goal is to expand their environmental education program and "Green Curriculum" initiatives through the outdoor classroom. Included in the project is the creation of a greenhouse and a water system that would utilize the rain water from the roof of the school building.
Brookside Public School (Grades JK - 8)
Brookside Public School is a rural school committed to promoting environmental stewardship. As many students will continue on in the agriculture industry, an outdoor classroom will be used to promote responsible land use and the importance of planting trees to benefit the environment while emphasizing the importance of biodiversity among students. Turning the schoolyard into more than just a play space, the outdoor classroom would be used to meet a variety of curriculum needs.
Hilson Avenue Public School (Grades K - 6)
Hilson Avenue Public School has been creating a plan for an outdoor classroom for the past year with support from the student body, faculty and parents. Serving a diverse population that includes many first-generation Canadian students, this outdoor classroom will turn an underused corner of the school yard into a space that provides students with a hands-on, highly interactive opportunity to learn about their new country and its environment.
C.E. Broughton Public (Grades JK - 8)
C.E. Broughton Public is an Eco School and looks to provide a venue to educate students about the environment while sparking an interest in conservation and sustainability. The school grounds are the centre of student life and school administration, parents and students have been working toward creating an outdoor classroom for many years. C.E. Broughton Public has plans to create a nature/fitness trail and a nature study area using natural, recycled or reused materials.
Central Elementary School (Grades Pre-K - 5)
Swift Current, SK
Central Elementary School is the oldest school in the city of Swift Current and has been declared a Heritage Site, celebrating its centennial year in 2014. It is the school's desire to landscape the space while maintaining the heritage feel so that students, teachers, and the community have opportunities to enjoy the calm space and fresh air and to discover the beauty of nature. The school hopes to get students involved with planting and caring for the outdoor space.
Homesteader Elementary School (Grades K - 6 and Early Education)
Homesteader Elementary School is filled with staff who want to help students achieve their goals and students who want to do their best and learn. The school plans to create an outdoor classroom with gardens focused on encouraging good health, well-being and using the school's "Seven Habits". Positively impacting each student's education, the classroom would be a place for students and the community to study and relax, while enjoying the peaceful environment and fresh air.
Pleasantside Elementary (Grades 1 - 5)
Port Moody, BC
Located in a rich, abundant and beautiful ecosystem, Pleasantside Elementary School provides a suitable space for an outdoor classroom. Not only would the classroom be used by students at the school, but it would be open to all schools in the Coquitlam School District. The school would use the classroom to provide students with the opportunity to study the life cycle of trees while learning about the importance of forests, social responsibility and sustaining and protecting the environment.
The winning school will celebrate the completion of their new outdoor classroom at a planting event in the fall of 2012.
MAJESTA is the soft and green choice for household paper products. MAJESTA products are made from trees from J.D. Irving, Limited's forests. As part of its award-winning commitment to responsible forest management, J.D. Irving, Limited plants seedlings every spring and summer to reforest the woodlands. In the past 50+ years, J.D. Irving, Limited has planted over 850 million trees. Since 2001, J.D. Irving, Limited's forests have been certified by The Sustainable Forestry Initiative Inc. ("SFI"). Our promise is: "We plant three trees for every one we use to produce MAJESTA products." Both soft and green, MAJESTA delivers the softness you can feel and feel good about.
About Tree Canada:
Tree Canada is a not-for-profit, charitable organization established in 1992. Under the direction of an 11-member volunteer Board of Directors, Tree Canada provides education, technical assistance, resources and financial support through working partnerships to encourage Canadians to plant and care for trees in rural and urban areas.
About Focus on Forests:
Focus on Forests provides hands-on activities and support materials to assist teachers of all grade levels. The lesson plans are well organized and designed to be easily adapted to any teaching environment or grade level. Focus on Forests is a program of the Ontario Forestry Association. Together with Tree Canada, these two groups have combined their efforts to bring this forest education program to a Canada-wide audience and highlight the value that Focus on Forests plays in introducing forests to Canadian classrooms. This exciting new partnership is supported by Irving Consumer Products, the makers of MAJESTA household paper products.
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