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Field Trip



Five thematic, hands-on, student-driven investigations make up the Kentucky Green Schools program. Using critical thinking and problem-solving skills, students analyze their school’s energy, water, school site, waste and recycling, and environmental quality. As a result of completing the investigations, students identify areas where improvements can be made to make their school greener and healthier, and in many cases save money!

Each Investigation Includes:

  • Teacher Guide

  • Overview & Background Information

  • Student Investigation Worksheets

  • Resources

  • Fact Sheets

  • Careers

  • and more!

How to Access the Investigation Guides

  1. Register to become a Kentucky Green School

  2. Create a free KAEE Site Member account

  3. Visit the Investigation Downloads page available only to Kentucky Green Schools.

Kids in Vegetable Farm

The Investigations

Themed investigations help guide students through examining their school grounds and school’s energy use, waste and recycling, water consumption, and overall environmental quality. Learn about each investigation by clicking the icons below.



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School Environment

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School Site

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Waste & Recycling

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Energy may be the most important environmental issue of our time. If you think about nearly any other environmental issue — air or water quality, land use, transportation, global climate change, or solid waste management, to name some examples — you will find that it is related to the issue of energy. 

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This investigation will help students become more aware of the energy they use every day. They will see the connections between the energy they use, natural resources, and pollution. The results of the investigation will help students develop action plans for reducing energy use at their school.

Energy Investigation Objectives

  • Collect baseline data on energy use at your school and on the school’s physical environment.

  • Use monitoring equipment—such as infrared thermometers, watt meters, and light meters—to take various measurements and to record data.

  • Evaluate light quantity and quality to determine whether it supports optimal learning.

  • Assess lighting options for energy conservation.

  • Understand how individual and collective actions can affect energy use and the environment.

  • Discover the connection between energy use and the conservation of natural resources.

  • Learn about sustainable approaches to energy management and why it is important to adopt sustainable practices.

  • Generate a plan to reduce the school’s energy use and to improve the school’s overall environmental performance while cutting costs.

  • Implement one or more of your energy improvement strategies.