Our inaugural competition received many excellent submissions, demonstrating the great work in caring for water being performed by classrooms throughout California. Our team is extremely proud of the great work and dedication demonstrated statewide. Thank you to each and every classroom for your commitment to water conservation. Keep up the amazing work!
Learn more about our winning classrooms below!
PROJECT TITLE: "Room 17’S H2O Challenge: Rain Collection and Native Garden"
TEACHER NAME: Kelli Voss and Sarah Greenberg
CITY: Chico, CA
GRADE LEVEL: 5th Graders
Our grand prize winning classroom developed a rain collection system to water a garden of native drought tolerant plants that they created, which will be cared for by the school’s future students. To this end, students broke into teams networking amongst each other to meet project goals within the time limit. Teams included financiers, execution specialists, designers, engineers, and researchers. In learning about water conservation, the California drought, and the background needed to create their rain collection system and garden, the students consulted with a local rancher and a native nursery to which they took a field trip. Additionally students created brochures to spread conservation awareness at Shasta Elementary and neighboring schools.
PROJECT TITLE: "Blue Marble (Earth)”
TEACHER NAME: Barbara Elrod
CITY: Bakersfield, CA
GRADE LEVEL: 5th Graders
This fifth grade class developed a public awareness campaign for reducing water usage, distributing family water use surveys and pledges in the community, along with a letter campaign to engage state lawmakers, scientists, and activists. Inspired by the book Blue Mind: The Surprising Science That Shows How Being Near, In, On, or Under Water Can Make You Happier, Healthier, More Connected, and Better at What You Do by Wallace J. Nichols, students decided, as part of their informational campaign, to distribute a blue marble to persons making an impact in water issues to help spread thanks and appreciation for their good work.
PROJECT TITLE: "Native Californian Garden Project"
TEACHER NAME: Gerardo Guzman-Rico
CITY: Stockton, CA
GRADE LEVEL: 4th/5th Graders
With guidance from their teacher, students developed a two-prong water conservation project, researching, designing, and preparing a California-native garden with drought-tolerant plants for their school, and initiating a public outreach plan by writing to city officials to advocate for the replacement of grassy areas with native plants. The idea came to students while looking for ways to expand ongoing water conservation efforts. The classroom realized they could restore an existing school space that was overrun with weeds and debris. By creating the garden, students were able to conserve water while also beautifying their school and promoting greater water conservation efforts in their community.
PROJECT TITLE: "The Power of One"
TEACHER NAME: Diana Martinez
CITY: Los Angeles, CA
GRADE LEVEL: 6th Graders
This sixth grade classroom researched the drought and everyday ways to reduce water waste, and then developed displays that demonstrated the impact various behaviors can have on saving water, including tips and advice to help their community learn to save water as well. In researching water waste students determined the exact amount of water they can save by changing different behaviors, factoring in for the amount of water used over time for each behavior. Through this process the class came to understand the serious nature of the drought, the ways in which they can unconsciously contribute to water waste, and how to save water and become agents of change.