Queen's University

School yard makeover: eco-edition challenge


One lucky local elementary school will have the opportunity to beautify its school yard in an ecofriendly way, thanks to a contest run by the Queen’s-led Kingston Society for Conservation Biology (SCB).

“The purpose of the School Yard Makeover is to raise awareness about local conservation issues while also providing students with a meaningful learning experience and an environmentally friendly place to play,” says SCB president Scott Taylor, who is a PhD student in Biology.

Open to all elementary schools in the city of Kingston, the School Yard Makeover: Eco-Edition challenges each elementary school in the city to showcase their desire for a greener and more environmentally friendly school yard. Each participating school will submit a portfolio that can include drawings, poems, pictures, stories and movies created by the students to demonstrate their views of an ecologically friendly school yard. The grand prize is a school yard naturalization project worth $1000.

“By introducing students, staff and the community to the benefits of landscaping with native wildflowers, shrubs and trees we hope to encourage local conservation while improving the appearance of local elementary schools,” says Mr. Taylor.

This is the third year that the School Yard Makeover has been held. Previous winners were Central Public School and Bayridge Public School. Schools interested in participating in this year’s contest can send an email to scb@biology.queensu.ca by March 1. Completed portfolios are due April 2.

Coinciding with the School Yard Makeover is the SCB’s annual nature photo contest. Anyone with a passion for photography can submit nature-themed photos in three different categories: landscapes, flora (including photos of wild flowers, trees etc.) and fauna (including mammals, birds, fish, insects etc.). Submissions are due March 5.

All photos will be displayed on campus at the TeaRoom from March 8 – 24. During this time the public is invited to bid on the photos in a silent auction, with all proceeds going to the School Yard Makeover program. A public lecture on conservation biology will be held March 24 with professor Neil Osborne. For photo submission details, or for more information about the School Yard Makeover, contact scb@biology.queensu.ca.

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Last updated at 4:55 pm EDT, Wed August 27, 2014
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