Waste Not Food Program
- Description: Students to attend the residential summer camp held at HEEC every summer participate in the Waste Not Food Program. This program was designed to limit the amount of food that students take on their trays and do not eat during meals at summer camp. On the first day of camp, students are not given any instruction to limit the food they take to only what they know they can eat. However, when it is time to cleanup after a meal, they are instructed to place any uneaten food in a separate container. That food is separated by students' cabin assignments, weighed, and results are recorded on a large chart. On the second day of camp, the chart is displayed where students eat. A discussion is held about the benefits of limiting food waste and the students are encouraged to only take what they will eat. Uneaten food continues to be weighed, and it becomes a competition among the groups of students to have the least amount of food waste. The weight of discarded food decreases notably as the week progresses.
- Grade Level: Students who have just completed grade 5
- Number of Students Involved: Approximately 120 students annually
- Date: This activity is completed yearly during summer camp. It was last completed in June of 2019.
Decomposition & Composting Lesson
- Description: When second grade students visit HEEC in the fall, they complete a lesson on soil and decomposition. Students learn about the layers of soil and soil nutrients. We then discuss decomposers and how they add nutrients to the soil. Next, students are taken outside and visit different areas at HEEC, such as a forest and a meadow, to compare the soil characteristics and the types of decomposers found in each area. Students end the lesson by visiting the composing container that decomposes HEEC lunch waste.
- Grade Level: 2
- Number of Students Involved: Approximately 300 students annually (all GCPS grade two students)
- Date: Activity is completed annually and was last completed in September of 2019
- Description: HEEC stresses the importance of waste reduction, which includes encouraging recycling. Students are encouraged to recycle any items possible during their visits rather than throwing them in the trash. Staff discuss the benefits of recycling and waste reduction and encourage students to continue the practice in their daily lives.
- Grade Level: Pre-k through 12
- Number of Students Involved: All students who visit HEEC (Approximately 4.000 students annually)
- Date: Ongoing