Action Research: Implementing Steel Cutlery for Student Use (Eliminating Single Use Plastic)
During the Eco-Youth Forum facilitated by LSF and hosted by 3M in the fall of 2020, the students created a plan to match the commitment made by the Peel Board to eliminate the use of single use plastics by December 2020.
LSF committed $200 to use toward the students’ project. The students plan included purchasing stainless steel cutlery and organic dish soap. The students planned to fundraise to purchase a dish drainer and tea towels. They also suggested to have teachers at the school donate a mug for each lunchroom class to hold the cutlery. The student team planned to create a Google Slide presentation educating the students and staff about the negative environmental impact of single use plastics, and also to inform them about this new system and how it was going to operate. A committed team of students would have to be selected through an application process, and specific responsibilities would be delegated. Clean cutlery needed to be initally distributed, dirty cutlery collected, washed (sanitized) and dried before being returned to the classrooms. Ongoing reflection and feedback would help the students to gauge how well the system was working and whether changes would have to be made.
Reflection & Celebration
Unfortunately, due to the job action by teachers in early 2021 and the onset of the global Covid19 pandemic, the students were not able to implement this fabulous, innovative project at Copeland. Once the Covid19 pandemic is over, we hope to resurrect this vision of the Grade 5 team (who graduated last spring) and implement it as soon as it is feasible and safe to do so!