Green Sparks

Green Sparks is a fun and engaging "project based learning" program that supports students to come up with creative ideas to affect the environment in a positive way - with the added advantage of the chance to win funds to implement their project project.

The program provides an opportunity for students to design a solution to an environmental concern they see at their school.This could be a lack of bird  habitat, too much playground litter, or wanting to use rainwater for the school gardens - the ideas are limitless!

Green Sparks is for students from Years 3 - 8, who are keen to learn new skills and build confidence in their ideas and abilities. Each class that submits an idea will have the opportunity to receive $500 for their school to implement their project idea if they win.

You will have until the end of Term 3 to submit your application.

Green Sparks is a flexible program that can be included in an existing unit of work, or used as a special stand-alone service project. Green Sparks would also be perfect as a project for your school's environmental team or Student Council.

Schools can work on Green Sparks from the beginning of Term 1 though to 14 September, when applications close.

See the Guide's in the document library to your right, for all the information, project ideas and curriculum links.

What teachers say about Green Sparks

"My class enjoyed every minute of the process. It was inspiring as their teacher to hear all the wonderful ideas and solutions they discussed that could solve the environmental issues that face their local surroundings."

"I really liked the specific questions. It was easy to keep the kids referring back to them as they worked through their ideas."

"Sometimes it pushed them to think about things they wouldn't have otherwise, and that was great."

All teachers who have participated to date said they would do the program again and would highly recommend it to other teachers.

What students say about Green Sparks

"Presenting it to the school, filming the video, and finally being able to express my ideas."

"The best part about Green Sparks was that my friends and I got to change an environmental problem in a fun and exciting way."

"It was great knowing that this project can make the world greener and better."

"It was fun making posters and films for this project." 

"The best part was working together as a team." 

2017 Winners

Congratulations to Moriah College Primary School who are the 2017 Green Sparks Winners! Their project idea, Mayim Chaim or Water for Life was developed by the Student Voice group, who put together a very compelling, scientific and creative application on how they plan to reduce water waste at the school.

The students measured wasted water from water bottled at the end of the day from each c;ass and created an informative video about the issue. Moriah College will use their $500 winning prize money to install a rainwater tank to water their veggie garden!

What made it a stand out idea?

  • The idea to measure the water wasted
  • The way they involved the whole school

There were lots of great ideas from local schools including a walking school bus, a food waste reduction program, renewable energy and a litter reduction project.

Well done to all the students who took part in this project based learning opportunity. We can't wait to see what you come up with next year!

2016 Winners

A big congratulations to Waverley Public School who are our Green Sparks Champions this year. They won both the junior and senior prizes with their project ideas to adopt Victoria Park and to cut water wastage at school.

The Victoria park group inspected the park and concluded that as well as a good spruce up, Victoria Park needed more habitat for native animals. The school held a fun working bee to create a new native garden, wash fences and pick up littler at Victoria Park. They will continue to help look after the park.

What made it a stand out idea?

  • The research
  • The holistic approach to the park
  • The scientific approach

The Waster Wastage group audited their toilet block and water bubblers and decided that water savings could be made by replacing faulty bubblers and taps.

Waverley Green Sparks 2016 winner

2015 Winners 

Birdlife from Montessori East Birdlife project aimed to bring more native birds into their school grounds. Students did a lot of research on local birds and what food and shelter the native birds need. They put their research to good use and added more native plants and a bird bath to encourage birds to visit their playground.

What made it a stand out idea?

  • The bird count
  • The research on local birds
  • The garden plan

Relevant documents

Get inspired

Need some inspiration? Check out other school’s sustainability projects. Here are some useful links:

Sustainable schools - kids growing a better future

Five steps to a more sustainable school

Coogee Public School: Green Kids

Need more information?

Vicky Bachelard, Sustainable Communities Officer

9083 8049

vicky.bachelard@waverley.nsw.gov.au