As part of ongoing environmental initiatives, students and staff with the Rainbow District School Board went paperless today.
Bruce Bourget, Education Director, says the challenge was for schools to create 21st-century paperless classrooms by avoiding the use of printers, photocopiers and paper-based assignments.
He says the initiative is part of the Environmental Committee’s ongoing efforts to encourage sustainable practices in the classroom.
He adds students also spent part of their day talking about the environmental impacts of going paperless.
He explains environmental impacts range from reducing oxygen levels by cutting trees; using energy to make paper, printers, and ink and toner cartridges; and consuming fuel by distributing paper and paper resources.
“Traditionally, Indigenous people used birchbark scrolls to record sacred knowledge and events. To transfer this knowledge to future generations, symbols and/or images were etched on the birchbark for safekeeping. Today, birchbark scrolls continue to be used to document rites of knowledge that are received through ceremony.”
Bourget adds symbols were also used on wampum belts to convey meaning and understanding of the marked agreements between Nations such as the many Treaties between Indigenous peoples and the Government of Canada.
To better understand this practice, educators were also given resources to explore the use of patterns, shapes, and images in storytelling.
Classes are invited to take part in traditional sharing/talking circles – which are known to foster healing and wellness and build healthy relationships within the classroom.