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Showing Fanny Perez Michaud

First Place

9-12 | Science & Tech | Hands on activities

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My Classroom Innovation

Green Initiatives at Rockland BOCES Career & Technical Education Center Instructor – Fanny Perez Michaud As an occupational science and academic support teacher, my goal is to empower students by providing them with opportunities to make real-life connections and to communicate their findings with the broader community. My role as an innovative instructor and facilitator puts students in the driver’s seat and empowers them as agents of change in an effort to make our school community environmentally friendly. Rockland BOCES Career and Technical Education Center (CTEC) has been a driving force in implementing a green initiative program throughout our school campus. A couple of years ago, our CTEC students built an energy efficient house, which uses a solar hot water, solar roof shingles, and geothermal heating. Our latest green project involves setting up a living laboratory atop one of our building rooftops. My goals as a science teacher is to have students witness the benefits of a green roof, as well as to learn of career opportunities in this field. The students present their findings to local businesses, parents, and to other members of the community. I truly believe that by empowering our students and making them the driving force to this change initiative, our career amd technical education (CTE) school has become an influential partner in the effort to infuse 21 century skills into education.

How Students were Engaged

Green Initiatives at Rockland BOCES Career & Technical Education Center Instructor – Fanny Perez Michaud The first phase of the green roof project began in September 2009 and included a 96 square foot (8 ft x 12ft) of green space. This area was set up to determine if the roof structure is capable of sustaining added weight, including soil, plants, rainwater, students and teachers, with no risk to the building's structure. Occupational science students monitor the growth conditions of a plant species to determine the most suitable growth medium for our campus weather conditions. Students research the benefits of a green roof, and hope to expand the project to the rooftop of a local restaurant later in the school year. This project is part of the ongoing green technology initiatives being piloted across the CTEC campus. The experimental set-up included the planting of (45) sedum plants in three (4’X 8’) plywood panels (planter beds), about 3’ high, placed in front of the solar array. Each planter bed has15 sedum plants and the science students monitor the conditions on a comparative study basis, to see if one bed grows better than the other. The students conduct weekly monitoring of the pH, light and moisture levels of each growth medium using a meter probe. As sections are seeded and thrive, they will be added to over time, creating a beautiful improvement to the rooftop of our building.

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