Staff Member Shares Passion for Green Initiatives With Students
As a kid, Chuck D’Andrea remembers Keep Akron Beautiful visiting his school and making a cleanup of the school property fun. So when he got the chance to serve on the board for Keep Hilliard Beautiful last year, it was a no-brainer.
As an Innovation & Discovery Specialist at Brown Elementary, he’s not required to teach a set curriculum. This allows him to share his passion for the Earth and renewable resources with his students in a broader way. He’s no stranger to getting students and the district involved in green initiatives. When he worked at Crossing Elementary and advised the Student Council, he led tree-planting projects and began recycling paper before it was a district-wide initiative.
“I enjoy bridging the gap between the schools and Keep Hilliard Beautiful,” he said.
One example of this is a project he’s currently working on alongside Coca-Cola, the Franklin Soil and Water Conservation District and Hilliard City Schools. Coca-Cola is providing old syrup barrels to Amanda Schaeffer, an art & ecology teacher at Hilliard’s Innovation Campus. Her students are painting the barrels which will then be shared with the community at an Earth Day event. The goal is to educate residents on the benefits of rain barrels. The fact that they can be an art piece for your home is a bonus!
Keep Hilliard Beautiful is responsible for monthly cleanups and beautification projects within the boundaries of Hilliard City Schools. They recently added a garden filled with plants native to Ohio at Historical Village. D’Andrea will soon begin working with students on ecobricks, which are old bottles filled with plastic that cannot be recycled. The bricks will be used to build the base of a birdbath.
“I love this organization because it’s one of the few volunteer opportunities that are available to all ages, and as a teacher and parent, I love providing kids with ways to think outside themselves and to help their community,” he said.
Learn more here.