Have you ever considered how math and science might benefit the environment? Samsung’s Solve for Tomorrow National Education Contest focuses on how science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education can help the environment. Last year Leewood K-8 Center won the contest and this year G.W. Carver Middle also won. Both schools are part of the Green Schools Challenge.

Everglades National Park

To become more environmentally aware, students at G.W. Carver Middle began monitoring the school’s energy and water bills. In addition, students conducted a comprehensive energy audit at home. But they didn’t stop there. Students and teachers attended a public meeting about, Old Smokey, the city’s former garbage incinerator that was shut down in 1970. Through this experience G.W. Carver students realized they could become part of the solution. Thanks to winning Samsung’s Solve for Tomorrow contest, students will analyze the findings of the city’s soil tests and interview researchers, residents, and local officials. After collecting their own data, students will compare their test results to the official ones and bring attention to the matter, inspiring city officials to take action.

In 2013 a group of 7th graders from Leewood K-8 Center along with their teacher also entered Samsung’s education contest. Students visited Everglades National Park where they collected and tested water samples, learning that much of South Florida’s water is polluted by toxic runoff. As a way to combat pollution, students began a school garden project as a way to introduce safe agricultural practices.  Thanks to the Samsung grant the school was able to expand its garden program and purchase the necessary technology to continue its water and soil research.

Congratulations to both schools on their individual wins and continued promotion of sustainable practices and education of their communities.