Bring Environmental Awareness into the Classroom with A&WMA’s Classroom Environmental Materials

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Pittsburgh, PA (April 19, 2006) – Earth Day is Saturday, April 22, 2006, and A&WMA’s materials can help you provide environmental learning activities in K-12 classrooms. A&WMA’s Environmental Education Resource Center features the award-winning Environmental Education Resource Guide (EERG), free downloadable lesson plans, Understanding Air Quality outreach products, information booklets, fact sheets, and more.

The CD-ROM-based EERG, developed by the A&WMA Education Council in cooperation with Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Indiana with the support of a number of A&WMA Sections and Chapters, has served as the basis of many successful workshop programs.

One such workshop was recently held by A&WMA’s Tampa Bay Chapter at the Tampa Electric Company (TECO) Manatee Viewing Center Education Facility in Apollo Beach, FL. The workshop consisted of various presentations and hands-on activities. Thirteen K-5 teachers of the Hillsborough County Public Schools, along with the K-5 Science Supervisor Elizabeth Hunnicutt, attended the workshop. The workshop, which demonstrated various classroom exercises from the EERGs, presented:

  • Local air quality and air emissions information from the Environmental Protection Commission of Hillsborough County (EPC-HC);
  • Information on TECO’s air emissions reduction technologies; and
  • History and forecasts of its air emissions reduction programs.

A well received exercise was “Meet the Dirty Half Dozen,” a staged play about the reunion of the six ambient air quality criteria pollutants, introducing students to the pollutants and their effects and sources. The play is hosted by “Soo Clean” and “Dee Dirt,” who conduct interviews with “Carbon Monoxide,” “Lead,” “Ozone,” and other characters. Each actor dons accessories that help characterize their roles.

Participating teachers said that the workshop was useful, informative, and interactive, and they looked forward to incorporating the EERG exercises into their classrooms. “It was clear that the teachers valued our workshop, and they said that the exercises we demonstrated were new, challenging, and most importantly fun,” said Sharon Good, P.E. (TECO).

Positive feedback for the program echoed praise received last year, after a consortium of Pennsylvania not-for-profits, including the Southwest Pennsylvania Air Quality Partnership, Inc.; Pennsylvania Resources Council; and the Group Against Smog and Pollution, with assistance and funding from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, cooperated to train teachers on environmental issues. More than 160 teachers attended a series of workshops in western Pennsylvania, and each teacher received a copy of A&WMA’s EERG on CD or the Understanding Air Quality Outreach Kit on CD.

'A&WMA’s Understanding Air Quality Outreach Kit is a valuable resource for teachers interested in learning and teaching the basics of air quality,” said Rachel Filippini, Executive Director of the Group Against Smog and Pollution. “We were pleased to be able to offer each teacher participating in the Air Quality and You teacher workshop with a free kit, and we believe it will be an effective tool when used in the classroom to help provide students with a greater realization and appreciation of this important natural resource.'

For more information on the EERGs, visit www.awma.org/education/EERG.asp or contact the Public Education Program, A&WMA at (412) 232-3444 or (800) 270-3444.

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