Carnival on the Parkway April 16 kicks off two week long Phila Science Festival: join us there!

If you don’t have a reservation for the sold out Melting Moments of Delight: The Science of Chocolate (Artisserie Chocolate Cafe on South 18th next Friday), not to worry: you’ve got dozens of alternatives for discovering how science intersects with our daily life over the next couple of weeks as the Philadelphia Science Festival gets underway. You can discuss Biomedical Ethics over beer,  uncover the science behind the iPod, hear how fuel cells can decrease our dependency on oil, and catch inventor Dean Kamen‘s views on innovation and the future. Events are happening all over the city, from the 15-28!

You can check out the complete schedule here >>

The Festival kicks off with a public outdoor carnival on Saturday, April 16th and we’ll be there in force. GreenTreks has teamed up with the School District of Philadelphia and our EcoExpress Community Partners to create a booth offering young and old the chance to discover their connection to the local environment–while also offering teachers resources they can take back to the classroom to engage their students in exciting new ways.

What: Science Carnival on the Ben Franklin Parkway

When: Saturday, April 16, 2011. 10:00 am to 5:00 pm

Cost: FREE ALL DAY!

We’ll be there! Visit the School District of Philadelphia with EcoExpress and our Community Partners at Booth 74 around Logan Square on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, just west of Race Street, to participate in hands-on activities focused on Philadelphia’s watersheds. Learn about the quality of our waterways by exploring Delaware Valley Earth Force’s watershed map, viewing local water samples through microscopes with volunteers from the GlaxoSmithKline Science Ambassadors, and taking home native plant seeds that help protect your local water sources. EcoExpress will provide teachers with lesson plans aligned to Pennsylvania State Academic Standards for Environment & Ecology and Science & Technology and the School District of Philadelphia’s Planning and Scheduling Timelines, so teachers can incorporate EcoExpress.org‘s ever-expanding library of videos and educational resources into their curriculum.

ECOEXPRESS is for everyone, so be sure to stop by BOOTH 74!

Science Carnival on the Parkway Details  >>

Science Carnival Map and Guide >>

Philadelphia Science Festival Details >>

Philadelphia Science Festival Schedule of Events >>



Ask not what your community can do for you-ask what you can do for your community

We love sharing, borrowing, and/or paraphrasing quotable quotes, and there’s no better time than Earth Month to revisit the spirit of giving back that President Kennedy sought to instill during his historic inaugural address.

My fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you — ask what can you do for your country.

President John F. Kennedy, Jan 20, 1961.

President Obama’s United We Serve initiative picks up on the theme — and a couple of weeks ago, highlighted a great story on the intersection of service, learning, and preparing our youngsters for the demands of the 21st Century. Check it out here >>

Closer to home, there are literally hundreds of opportunities to answer the call in the coming weeks, from Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful’s Great PA Cleanup events to the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society’s Plant One Million Trees initiative; from the Schuylkill Scrub watershed wide beautification efforts to a variety of events being hosted around the City of Philadelphia.

If running’s your thing (like ours), you can support the Clean Air Council’s work while hammering out a 5K on the Drives.

April 16: 30th Anniversary 5K for Clean Air >>

For change of scenery, venture out to the Cobbs Creek Parkway for the inaugural 5K hosted by the Darby-Cobbs Watershed Partnership.

April 23: Cobbs Creek 5K >>

Take the plunge and get Involved. Somehow, somewhere, you can start making a difference.

Do something TODAY.



Our first annual Teachers Networking event


This Thursday, the GreenTreks team and many of our amazing partners will be hosting a fantastic evening of learning, networking, and fun at the Beautiful Fairmount Water Works Interpretive Center on Philadelphia’s Schuylkill River. We’ve invited educators from around the region to come network with fellow science teachers, learn about local environmental non-profit organizations and community-based programs that offer experiential-learning opportunities, and discover the resources we’ve made available on our flagship Online Resource Center, EcoExpress.

Light fare and drinks will be provided. All teachers who attend will receive a packet containing special materials from EcoExpress.org and EcoExpress’ Community Partners (while supplies last). A donation of five dollars will be accepted at the door.

To register or to see the list of scheduled event activities, please visit EcoExpress.EventBrite.Com

A Special Shout out to all of those who have helped make this event possible, including generous support from:

Fairmount Water Works Interpretive Center

BFN – The Business Friends Network

Save Some Green

Dynasty Wines (Distributed by Vintners Choice, 610-631-3120)

AND viewers like you : )


Sustainability Education for the Next Generation

We’re proud to take part in Green From the Start, the Feb. 17 Urban Sustainability Forum at the Academy of Natural Sciences, where we’ll be sharing our exciting Educators Resource Center, EcoExpress.

Here are the Details:

Date: February 17, 2011.  Reception: 6:00 pm.  Program: 6:30 – 8:30 pm

How is our region educating the next generation of residents who will be living in a world of more limited resources, overpopulation, and more severe changes in climate?

February’s Urban Sustainability Forum will demonstrate the need for students and teachers in kindergarten through high school to have awareness, knowledge and skills in science, economics, technology, engineering, math, sociology, history, and art to create a new and more sustainable approach to living in southeast Pennsylvania.

The forum will showcase examples from local programs and institutions that are successfully taking on this challenge. Organizations from around the region with formal and informal education programs addressing sustainability and student awareness of the natural world will also be on hand to display their efforts and programs.

Featuring:

Dennis Winters (Moderator) President, Board of Trustees, Green Woods Charter School. Chairman, Sierra Club PA Chapter.

Tony Girifalco (Keynote) Executive Vice President, Delaware Valley Industrial Resource Center.

With the Following Panelists:

Jean Wallace, CEO, Green Woods Charter School

Keith Arrington, Principal, Thurgood Marshall School

Vera Figueiredo, Director of Community Programs, EarthForce

Victor Donnay, Professor of Mathematics, Bryn Mawr College. Co-Principal Investigator, INLETS project.

To register please visit:  http://sustainabilityeducationforum.eventbrite.com/

The Link between the Environment and Our Health

From the Scientific American, January 28, 2011…

Would people care more about the environment if they had a better understanding of how it affects them personally?

No doubt many of the ways we harm our environment come back to haunt us in the form of sickness and death. The realization that the pesticide-laced foods we eat, the smokestack-befouled air we breathe and the petrochemical-based products we use negatively affect our quality of life is a big part of the reason so many people have “gone green” in recent years.

Just following the news is enough to green anyone. Scientific American reported in 2009 that a joint U.S./Swedish study looking into the effects of household contaminants discovered that children who live in homes with vinyl floors—which can emit hazardous chemicals called phthalates—are twice as likely to develop signs of autism as kids in other homes. Other studies have shown that women exposed to high levels of polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE) flame retardants common in cushions, carpet padding and mattresses—97 percent of us have detectable levels of these chemicals in our bloodstreams—are more likely to have trouble getting pregnant and suffer from other fertility issues as a result. Cheaply produced drywall made in China can emit so much sulfur gas that it not only corrodes electrical wiring but also causes breathing problems, bloody noses and headaches for building occupants. The list goes on and on….

Follow the dialogue here >>

If you think you can’t do anything about it, wise up! Check out this segment from Protecting our Children’s Health: