The Jerusalem Hills Special Education School is recognized by the Ministry of Environment as a green school.
We understand the importance of being environmentally friendly and of acquiring the correct habits from an early age, therefore environmental education has always been a part of the school curriculum. Young children are at an appropriate stage for acquiring sustainable living habits and connecting with their surroundings. It is important that this connection be built on admiration and respect for the environment. Actively improving the children’s immediate environment should be based on familiarity, personal connection with the environment and understanding of the importance of maintaining it for each of us. Exploring the natural surroundings, while incorporating learning outside of the classroom, is the basis for deepening the learning experience through discovery and wonder.
Our "green" curriculum includes annual study topics for different age groups such as "urban nature", "water" and "materials".
In "urban nature", the children are exposed to the abundance of their natural surroundings; becoming active citizens exploring various plant, insect and animal species, divining the impact of rain on the environment, and more. This not only takes place in the classroom but also incorporates learning in an urban environment close to the Home, which provides the children an opportunity to familiarize themselves with their natural surroundings.
The “Water” topic combines aspects of science and environmental education. Here, too, the children learn outside of the classroom, closely getting to know the special place of water in our world, while using research and observation, and being encouraged to be more socially involved in water conservation.
“Materials” includes familiarity with various materials, their origin and their impact on the environment. They learn about the importance of proper use of materials and the principle of the 3 Rs; Reduce, Reuse and Recycle.
There has been a “Green Committee” in the school for almost 8 years. The committee is made up of a representative from each classroom who are chosen because of their interest in the environment. These children engage in promoting a life-sustaining lifestyle in the school, while learning about various environmental issues (ecological footprint, consumerism, sustainability, endangered animals, birds and native plants, etc.). During their meetings, the children learn about energy and the pollution caused by using certain energy sources. The children discuss ways in which they can avoid wasting electricity in their daily lives and monitor the electrical usage on campus, while developing awareness to the importance of cutting down on electrical use. In addition, the Green Committee care for an ecological garden on the school grounds. They sow and plant, and learn about the importance of natural flora and the reasons for preserving and nurturing it.
The Children’s Home maintains a sustainable lifestyle, where possible. The school set up a recycling center that serves the children, parents and employees of the Home. There are also rainwater collection projects set up for irrigation and sustainability and some solar farms on the roofs of the buildings.