Steps for Completing GreenSchools! Investigations
PLT’s GreenSchools! Investigations include one or more surveys: a school-wide survey and, in some investigations, a classroom survey.
Classroom surveys are designed to be completed collectively by all students in a classroom that’s being surveyed. An adult leads the students in investigating a set of questions relating to their classroom.
The school-wide surveys are designed to be completed by members of the GreenSchools! team, versus entire classes of students. Team members interview key school staff.
1. What Do You Want to Find Out?
Before you begin, come up with a list of items and/or questions you have regarding your school’s energy use, waste practices, water quality and usage, school grounds, and overall environmental quality. Write down the items/questions or enter them on a computer.
2. Print the Surveys for each GreenSchool! Investigation
Print a copy of the school-wide and classroom surveys for each member of your PLT GreenSchools! team. Compare the items/questions you have regarding your school’s energy use, waste practices, water quality and usage, school grounds, and overall environmental quality to PLT’s GreenSchools! Investigations.
3. Organizing and Scheduling Your Investigations
Discuss how your GreenSchools! team is going to conduct each investigation. Are you all going to work together or are you going to break into groups and assign sections to each group? Another way to divide the responsibilities is to have specific roles. For example, you could have different groups for specific tasks such as collecting data; analyzing data; generating strategies for making improvements; or reporting/sharing findings.
Some investigations require individual classroom assessments. How will these be completed? Classroom surveys should be conducted first since the results are used to help complete the school-wide assessment that follows. Develop a schedule for how you will conduct each investigation.
Do you need specific school staff (custodial, maintenance, administrative) to be present during certain parts of the school-wide investigation? If so, contact them to schedule a time for this part of the investigation.
4. Time Requirements
Each survey will vary in the amount of time to complete, depending on the documentation available, equipment being used, and help from supporting school staff. Each GreenSchools! investigation includes a time estimate. Be sure to gather all of the needed supplies and documents listed for each investigation ahead of time.