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Change the World Project

Design+created+by+Ellie+Heinle
Design created by Ellie Heinle

 Amy Baker, Earth Science and Biology teacher, carries out a project called “Change the World.” 

You can’t just teach us about bees and how important they are. You have to go out there and have some positive impact on the bees,” Baker said. 

Baker’s “Change the World” project is designed to get students thinking about how they can impact their community, whether it be with people, the environment, or animals. 

“This is taking the high school project to the next level,” Baker said. “Instead of having my students research a topic and tell everyone how they can fix it, I’m having my students help fix the problem.”

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Baker has been carrying out projects of her own for years. Some of these projects include reducing plastic waste, cutting down her carbon footprint, water conservation, growing food organically, raising chickens and composting in her day to day life. 

A project Baker completed on her own was helping give feral cats better lives. She gave them medical care, spayed or neutered so they couldn’t reproduce and later helped find homes for them. 

“I just thought I could expand my impact on the world itself, coming from a conservation point of view,” she said.  

Baker has recently worked to incorporate these projects into the classroom. She has her students working on projects that include water conservation, reducing plastic use, making bat and bird houses, sending school supplies overseas and composting.  

“The big thing I want my students to get out of this is to understand that one person can make a difference because of this project,” Baker said. 

Sophomore Sienna Dhillon recalls completing her project last year by going to a nursing home and playing games such as bingo with them.

“I felt really special during this and it made me really happy seeing everyone else happy,” Dhillon said. “I would hear stories about them being lonely during the holidays, and I really wanted to make an impact on them by just celebrating with them and doing things that they enjoyed.”

Sophomore Connor Ellis completed his project on bees and made a pollinating garden. 

“It helped me really get a better understanding of nature and I felt like I really made an impact on the bees,” Ellis said.

While the process of this project might not be smooth sailing, the end results are significant. Baker divided this project into different parts to help her students carry out their ideas. Students spend the year working towards the end result. 

She mentioned that the most challenging thing for students with this project is generating ideas and writing their literature review while carrying out their project. Procrastination is another challenge, and one she hopes to avoid with the spreadsheet she put in place.

“I felt like I could expand my impact if I could incorporate it into the classroom,” Baker said.

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