English Language Learners Help Environment
Students in the Adult Academic Program in the Robbinsdale School District are brushing up on English and helping the environment at the same time.
Six weeks ago the English language learners had a lesson about protecting the environment from pollution. The students listened to the Voice of America and other educational stations to increase their vocabulary. They also made posters about pollution. Now they’re taking what they learned outside the classroom.
“We started learning about pollution,” explained instructor Barbara Beystrom. “We focused primarily on plastics and micro-plastics and the impact in the ocean, and then impact how it goes up the food chain, how the fish are eating it and finally, we eat the fish.”
Putting Lessons To Good Use
Beystrom says many students come from countries where pollution isn’t a priority. Students may be learning about the subject for the first time.
“We have to pick up trash so the earth, it’s good for the earth” said a preschool student.
On Tuesday, the class is helped to keep Baker Park Reserve beautiful. Adults paired up with kids to pick up unwanted trash and became very passionate about the cleanup. Although the beach is pretty clean, they did find plastics and other pollutants.
Many students realize protecting the earth takes a global effort. Student Joey Lee grew up in Hong Kong. “I like to save our earth. I want to make our earth like pretty and better, because we live in a healthy earth,” Lee said.
Now, Lake Independence and Maker Reserve Beach are cleaner. “It’s good for the environment to clean up. You don’t want to go to the park where it’s really trash,” said Sakny Tin from Cambodia.