Conserving water and energy with Green Apple Day of Service

Published on: 
Monday, September 25, 2017
Author: 
Kristen Keim

Did you know that a significant amount of a school's budget is dedicated to energy and water costs? Behind salaries, energy is the biggest expense for schools. Additionally, 25 percent of the energy a typical school uses is wasted, according to the EPA. Through their Green Apple Day of Service project in 2016, students at Boston Arts Academy learned about water and energy conservation. Additionally, the school wanted to explore the types of sustainable features they might include in their new building, which was in the design phase.

Boston Arts Academy Green Apple Day of Service project

The Boston Arts Academy audited their school’s water and energy usage with the help of the architects for the new building, HMFH Architects. A group of environmental science students calculated their school’s water usage from everyday activities, such as flushing the toilet or washing their hands. Then, they conducted an energy audit to calculate the amount of energy wasted throughout the school, specifically when the appliances were off, and compared different light sources’ efficiency.

Boston Arts Academy Green Apple Day of Service project

After gathering the data, the students decided to convert the school's energy usage into pounds of coal. They calculated that it takes 1,300 pounds of coal to power the lights in one classroom for 180 days. The students were surprised to discover how much water and energy is wasted every year in the school, and made commitments to be more thoughtful in their water and electricity usage.

The students’ eagerness to create change within their school was carried over into the design for the school’s new building. Along with HMFH Architects, Boston Arts Academy is working to make their new building as energy- and water-efficient as possible.

Want to find out if your school could improve its water and energy usage? Check out our specific tips and resources for projects to Reduce Water Use and Reduce Energy Use.

Create a Green Apple project

How to fund your Green Apple Day of Service project with DonorsChoose.org

Published on: 
Wednesday, September 20, 2017
Author: 
Kristen Keim

If you have a Green Apple Day of Service project that requires funding, consider receiving donations through DonorsChoose.org. If you register your Green Apple Day of Service project and link your DonorsChoose.org donation page to your project, the Center for Green Schools at USGBC will donate up to $200 toward your project.

What is DonorsChoose.org?

DonorsChoose.org is a crowdfunding platform that is free for public and charter school educators to help raise funds for classroom supplies and projects. Educators raise money through the website for supplies or equipment listed in DonorsChoose.org’s extensive catalog. Once the fundraising is complete, DonorsChoose.org will order and ship supplies directly to the school.

For more information, go to DonorsChoose.org. For directions on setting up an account, visit DonorsChoose.org's help page.

How do I get mini-grant funding?

Receiving mini-grants from the Center for Green Schools for your Green Apple Day of Service Project only requires a few steps.

  1. Register your Green Apple project through greenapple.org. Click “Log in” to make an account or log in to an existing account, and you’ll see a place to “Add a project.” Make sure your project adheres to on one of the three pillars of a green school: improving environmental impact, health and wellness or increasing environmental and sustainability literacy.
  2. Decide what materials or resources your project requires. Have an educator on your team sign up on DonorsChoose.org and request those materials. When the project is approved on that site, you’ll receive a six-digit project ID.
  3. Link your DonorsChoose.org page to your Green Apple registered project by copying the six-digit project ID from DonorsChoose.org into your greenapple.org project in the field within project registration. You can make changes to your Green Apple project any point, while registering or after registration has been completed.
  4. Raise the money. If your project is registered at greenapple.org with your DonorsChoose.org ID linked to your project, the Center for Green Schools will donate $200 to your Green Apple Day of Service project.

Register a Green Apple project

Register now to get funding for your Green Apple Day of Service

Published on: 
Tuesday, August 15, 2017
Author: 
Anisa Heming

Registration is open for Green Apple Day of Service, and now is the time to commit to engaging in a day of action to support sustainability at your local school, your kid’s school or a school you care about.

This year, when you link your registered project on greenapple.org to a donation page on DonorsChoose.org, the Center for Green Schools at USGBC will grant $200 to help meet your project’s goals.

Green Apple Day of Service

We’ve introduced lots of new things for the Day of Service. Over the next few weeks, we’ll be highlighting projects from previous years to give you some inspiration. We have plenty to choose from; over the past five years, we’ve seen thousands of projects in 73 countries, impacting the lives of over 7 million students.

Wondering what counts as a Green Apple Day of Service project? Check out these project ideas, look over our FAQ section for answers to commonly asked questions, and explore our resources page for promotional and planning tools.

Sign in to register your project

What's new with Green Apple Day of Service?

Published on: 
Monday, June 26, 2017
Author: 
Anisa Heming

Green Apple Day of Service is a unique moment to join schools across the world in celebrating the central role that schools play in preparing the next generation of leaders in sustainability.

Over the past five years, we’ve seen participation from almost one million volunteers in 73 countries, and our actions have impacted the learning environments of over seven million students. This year, we’ve taken a close look at what’s worked and what hasn’t over our short history, and we’re rolling out some exciting new features for this year:

  1. The most notable change is that, starting this year, you’ll register your project at the beginning of the school year and name your own date. The projects themselves can happen at any time from August 2017 through May 2018. However, the projects can only receive official support with funding, volunteers and other resources if they sign up on the website during September and October. We encourage schools to think about the right time for a day of action for them, and we’ll communicate with project leaders based on the chosen date.
  2. We have a new website that's been redesigned to provide with more of what you need to create a successful project. Resources and information are available now at greenapple.org, and project registration will open in September. Sign up on usgbc.org to receive updates leading up to the official registration period (check off "Green Apple Day of Service" on your subscription options).
  3. The new focus is on incentivizing school staff and teachers to lead action at their schools. They know what’s most needed at their schools, and they’re the ones who will keep sustainability values strong after the day of action is over. We’re making it worthwhile for them to join in: matching funds are available for supplies through our corporate partners on DonorsChoose.org, volunteer assistance is available through our community teams around the country, and fun downloads and planning resources are given to those who sign up. You'll find out more about all of these offerings when you register a project.

Green Apple Day of Service projects create measurable change on one or more of the three pillars of a green school: environmental impact, health and wellness and environmental and sustainability literacy. Each project directly and positively affects the students at a particular school.

Is your school’s Earth Day celebration a Green Apple Day of Service? It can be, if it includes service activities that impact sustainability at the school. Is the annual school service day a Green Apple Day of Service? It might be, if it focuses the service activities on sustainability. The Day of Service is unique because it brings together school service and sustainability on one focused day of action.

Visit our website to learn more