Wednesday, January 13, 2016

An entire day downtown Indy, studying eco science

Fourth and fifth grade students at School For Community Learning contacted me the other day; they wanted some ideas to consider as they plan for the upcoming Eco Science Fair at the Indiana State Museum. I was happy to help of course, because that meant we could get on IndyGo and explore the city, one of my favorite things to do in my role at Earth Charter Indiana.

If you want to learn more about the April 8 Eco Science Fair, contact me via email.

This is my seventh trip in partnership with IndyGo; I've taken well over 200 youth on IndyGo to see destinations that demonstrate sustainability. This was not SCL's first trip on IndyGo. They visited Indy Urban Acres not too long ago, and numerous students reported they are not strangers to our mass transit system.

We picked The Nature Conservancy as our main destination, then contacted friends at The Platform who let us commandeer a conference room for two hours, where we received various experts in sustainability.

Before we get to the photos, I want to thank everyone associated with this field trip today. First of all, SCL itself, who value field trips as an essential aspect of learning. Secondly, the fine folks at IndyGo, who give me passes to ease the financial burden on schools as they consider field trip costs. Thirdly, well, see below, for all the people who spent valuable time interacting with our youth.

It was a very cold morning walking to the bus stop.
Once we boarded it was smooth sailing downtown.
It helped to have the sun streaming thru the bus windows.
Kristi from The Nature Conservancy discussed various sustainability aspects of their remarkable building: geothermal, native plants, stormwater mitigation, LED lighting, etc.
We also discussed The Nature Conservancy's numerous green roofs.
Studying the geothermal system. upstairs ...
... and in the basement.
Center, you see two men, Michael Greven (hat and beard), working on the nearby Cummins building, and Jake Plummer, from Ratio. They talked about the sustainability features planned for the Cummins building.
Whitney Fields, right, from Indy Food Council, discussed local food systems.
Bill Taft, executive director of LISC, our host at the Platform, sparked a conversation about what makes neighborhoods great — and how to go about doing so.
Finally, Jamison Hutchins, the city's Bicycle and Pedestrian Coordinator, discussed bikes and city infrastructure.
There were many other adventures that day, including a visit to the Catacombs and, of course, the trip back to school via IndyGo. A great time had by all!