Posts made in January, 2014

What colour is the flag today?

By on Jan 23, 2014 in News | 0 comments

What colour is the flag in your community today? Chances are it is probably blue. Each day as students raise their Air Quality Flag, they are finding that the blue flag is the most common of all four. Given that British Columbia has good air quality most of the time, the frequency of a blue flag should not come as a surprise. The important thing to remember about the Air Quality Flag Program is that the flags are designed to help school communities understand the relationship between air and health. Knowing that encourages awareness of the air quality in case it does change and can help some people adjust their outdoor activity levels accordingly. Having a blue flag is something to celebrate; not every place in the world has air as clean as BC. If you’re participating in the Air Quality Flag Program and you or your students are looking for ways to continue learning about air quality, here are some ways to keep it top of mind: Share, Share, Share: Sometimes we learn about something better when we’re teaching it to others. Do you know another class that you could share the program with? Pass the program on and let other students in your school raise the Air Quality Flags. New activities: Take a look at the resources page to get a feel for the different activities available. Whether you’re looking for something that is curriculum-based or is more hands-on, there is something for everyone. Keep it current: Students at Chase River Elementary keep their Air Quality Flags close by when the school running club practices. Is there an outdoor sports event coming up at your school? How about a track meet or a soccer game? Raise the flag on the sidelines and let attendees know what kind of air day it is. This would be a great leadership opportunity for students to explain what the flags mean to someone who has never heard of the program. Compare and contrast: What is the air quality like in other parts of Canada? Abroad? A blue flag may be common in BC, but air quality is different in other places. Take a look at the following links: Airhealth: Choose a...

Read More

Schools get creative in second week of Air Quality Flag Program

By on Jan 20, 2014 in News | 0 comments

Just two weeks into the Air Quality Flag Program and our participating schools and students are reporting the unique ways they’re using the program to learn more about air quality and health. Two students at Barriere Elementary are planning their science fair project alongside their class lessons on air quality.  At Peden Hill Elementary in Prince George, students with asthma are using the flags as their own personal guide for how hard to play outside during recess and lunch. For the running club at Nanaimo’s Chase River Elementary, the flags are now part of their planning for running days. Once the flag is raised at school, lots of students are then sharing their thoughts through class conversation and online through their school blog.  Some are using their blog to comment on the day’s weather report along with Air Quality Health Index report – developing a great habit of checking the weather and the quality of the air. Beyond raising the flags, how schools adapt this program is up to them. Coordinators and classes at each school have found what works best for their community when it comes to getting the message out about Air Quality Flags. If you want to see what other schools are writing about – take a look at the other participating schools. Would you like to learn more about the Air Quality Flag Program? Your school could take part in future programs. Send me a note to tell me about ideas for your school! Cheers,...

Read More

Air Quality Flag Program Begins in British Columbia

By on Jan 7, 2014 in News | 0 comments

A new year always marks a new chapter. For a dozen elementary schools in B.C., it marks the beginning of a program about air quality and our health; the first of its kind in Canada. The Air Quality Flag Program is unique – developed to teach elementary students in B.C. about air quality and how to monitor it, along with suggested actions on protecting health when the air quality is poor. Students are now setting up their flag poles as they prepare to report the air quality in their community. The program allows participating schools  to raise an air quality flag corresponding to the day’s Air Quality Health Index. Finding a specific location for the flag pole has been a fun exercise for participating classes — children are trying to determine where the Air Quality Flag will receive the most attention. Meanwhile, teachers have shown our short, informative video and have added air quality activities to their lesson plans. To our participating schools, congratulations on starting 2014 off by learning something new!...

Read More