Posts Tagged With: Mrs. Luban

“Operation Save the Planet” Is Making a Difference at Oakwood and Beyond!

Allendale Public Schools, Operation Save the Planet, Oakwood Intermediate SchoolEach year, dozens of concerned students at Oakwood Intermediate School join Mrs. Schroeder, Mrs. Luban, Mrs. Wallace, Karen Wit, and Dawn Fields to help save the planet, one Cheetos bag at a time!

The students involved in Operation Save the Planet focus their energies on helping their school think green by organizing recycling efforts and educating their classmates. Some of the projects that the group works on include:

  • Oakwood works in partnership with Potluck Pick-Up, who provides full recycling bin service. This allows Oakwood to recycle plastics, glass, cardboard, cans, and paper. Bins located around the school and in the staff lounge are emptied by Save the Planet kids and consolidated for pick-up.
  • Oakwood has joined the Terracycle movement that encourages people to “outsmart waste”! Terracycle uses recycled items to create new products such as bags and purses; an entire list of Terracycle products can be seen here. The items that Operation Save the Planet collects and recycles are: Capri Sun drink pouches, all Mars candy bar wrappers, all Frito Lay brand chip bags, zip lock baggies, scotch tape dispensers, used cell phones.  The school receives about 2 cents per item collected, too!
  • Students in the club have collaborated to create earth-awareness videos which are played throughout the school at various times of the year, and have also sold re-usable grocery bags in previous years.
  • On Earth Day the club sponsors a “Zero Waste Lunch” to encourage kids to more closely monitor all that is thrown away.

Allendale Public Schools, Operation Save the Planet, Oakwood Intermediate

This year, the group meets twice a month before school to better keep up with the sorting of recyclables, and despite being a smaller group than in years past, Mrs. Schroeder praises her students for their passion and dedication.

The most rewarding part of working with the students of Operation Save the Planet is to see the members become passionate about recycling and living a more green life.  They start sharing ways they have encouraged their class to recycle more and ways they have helped their families make changes around their house to be more green.

Allendale Public Schools, Oakwood Intermediate School, Operation Save the Planet

Mrs. Schroeder helps her students organize recyclables collected at Oakwood.

Mrs. Schroeder went on to share a special story that highlights the zeal with which these students pursue their work with Operation Save the Planet:

…One year, Family Fare gave our club hundreds of brown grocery bags before Earth Day.  Our members decorated the bags with Earth Day messages, reminding customers to recycle.  We gave the decorated bags back to Family Fare to use at the store on Earth Day. 

One of the girls in the club decorated several bags throughout the time we had for the project.  Each day she would take a pile home, and bring them back beautifully decorated.  After several days of this,  I asked her if she was sure she wanted to take more home.  She was insistent that every bag counted because even if it helped one person become more aware about recycling, it was worth it. 

Moments like this remind me that even small things our club can do is worth it.

Thank you to all of the teachers who guide and mentor our earth-loving 4th and 5th graders, and thank you to the students who are making a difference!

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Summer Essay Series: Kaylyn Whitten, 4th Grade

My teachers and school make learning fun by doing different things every week and challenge us to do the best we can do.

One reason is the enrichment classes. I think it is a good thing we have enrichment because then you can go at your own level and learn what’s right for you. In 5th grade math you get to meet new friends and you get to learn new ways to do normal math while having fun. One of my teachers, Mrs. Luban, was teaching us a decimal problem and to help us to remember it, she taught us a song. One other enrichment class is the Explorers. They teach you techniques on how to make a good paper, and they do fun research projects like the bird report, and they read plays. I think the enrichment programs are good for anyone that is at a level higher than their grade.

Another reason is the after-school clubs. One of them is called OSTP. I am in this club and it teaches you about the earth and how to save our planet and gives new techniques on how to recycle and be green. Another club we have at our school is Singing Falcons. In this club you get to perform at different events, sing some songs, be with friends, and warm up your voices in the morning. I think the after-school clubs help you learn, be with friends, and have fun.

In addition, there are extra rewards. You have the chance to win prizes in other contests like the wallpaper contest. If you won the contest, then your wallpaper was displayed on all of the laptops in the whole school. We also do class stores where we can buy things with our Oakwood bucks like passes and toys, or we can do something else. Oakwood bucks is the class bank where if you do a certain job you get paid for it in Oakwood bucks. I think extra rewards push you to be respectful, responsible, and ready to learn.

Also, we have incentives at our school. If you clean, you can win a prize or get a pizza party for your class. We also do punch cards so that if you hit your goal, you get a punch in your card. When you fill your card, it gets put into a drawing and you have the chance to win a free lunch. We also do writing contests like this essay contest. If you win, you get interviewed, get a free pizza, and a Walgreen’s gift card. I hope they keep doing the extra rewards into next year so that the younger kids get to do it, too.

In conclusion, I think that my school is awesome in so many ways like the enrichment and after-school classes, because they help you learn while having fun. I also think that if we didn’t have the extra rewards and the incentives, the kids would not try as hard as they do now.

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Summer Essay Series: Taylor Kulikamp, 6th Grade

Giving Back

I was in 5th grade at Oakwood Intermediate School.  Mrs. Luban was my teacher; she was my favorite teacher at Oakwood.  Mrs. Luban was funny, nice, and caring.  But most of all she was the best at teaching us how to give back to our school and our community.

Mrs. Luban said, “Who wants to be in a club one Friday a month?”  She said we would be doing things to help our community.  We wanted to do something to help other people, so Mrs. Luban helped us think of some ideas.  We did a lot of fun things in her class.  One of my favorite things that we did was to make Christmas shoe boxes.  We also got to help out at L.O.V.E., Inc. and help organize stuff in their store.  The one trip that made me the most sad was going to the Humane Society.  It was sad to see all the animals without homes, but I felt happy to know that I helped them out by cleaning their cages.  We washed windows so when people came in to adopt the animals they could see them behind windows that were nice and clean.

In Mrs. Luban’s class we also did something called, “Coffee Friday.”  We did it the third Friday of every month.  We would come to school early and make coffee and other refreshments.  Once the coffee was made we would go around the school and give the coffee to the teachers and staff members at the school.  It was fun!

Mrs. Luban inspired me because by giving teachers coffee and by helping out in my community. It made me want to give back to others more often.  Mrs. Luban made me feel good about myself because I was doing something great for Allendale and for the Oakwood teachers.

I am so thankful to have had Mrs. Luban in 5th grade!

Categories: contests, Student Award Winners, Student Writers | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

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