KIDS Consortium's Blog

2011 Student Summit Reflections

Posted in 2011 Student Summit by KIDS Consortium on March 28, 2011

Here are just a few things we noticed, learned and loved about this year’s Summit:

During the closing, a slideshow of pictures from the two days was projected for everyone to see. These pictures, playing to this year’s Summit “theme song,” Jack Johnson’s “3 R’s,” showed that so much happened in just two days!

The student planners thanked Corey and Andy, the technical support staff at Bowdoin who were always ready to help get us through the technical difficulties. Tara Studley, our main contact and coordinator on the Bowdoin staff, was wonderful to work with and helped make the event go smoothly! We all appreciate their help.

The student presentations blew us away. There is a lot of excellent work going on at schools all over the Northeast. Students included solid data in their presentations, and really knew their stuff! It was exciting to hear kids asking–and answering–tough questions.

It was a bit snowy right at the opening, but the sun came out by the time things really got underway!

The water bottles, given as raffle prizes, were a big hit.

Bowdoin College was a great place to hold a green-themed event. From signs over light switches reminding everyone to turn off lights if the room is not in use, to recycling bins in each building, the campus supports environmental awareness. The guest speaker from Bowdoin Friday shared the many steps the college has taken on its way to becoming carbon neutral.

Among the reflections: “This was so cool! I didn’t know that so many other schools were composting too.” And the ice cream in the dining hall was very popular.

KIDS Consortium founder Marvin Rosenblum has attended all 11 Student Summits. This year, in addition to working with the Pemetic students before the event to help them prepare for speaking to the large audience, he spoke at the closing. His inspiring words encouraged everyone continue to make a difference.

This 11th annual KIDS Consortium Student Summit continued some new traditions that began with last year’s Summit. For example, this blog started last year. Two Pemetic students, Margaret and Sara, wrote great posts this year. Thanks to them for helping us share the Summit with the world.

To offset the carbon footprint of student teams traveling to the Summit, each team was given two Eastern White Pine trees to plant. These trees will be another lasting reminder of this event.

Channel 8 news came Thursday, and Ali was very excited to be interviewed!







A huge thank you again to all who participated in this year’s Summit!

Summit participants, what were your memorable moments from the Summit? What did we not mention here that you want to share? Add your comments (your email will NOT be made public or shared).

Student Summit – Teams Are Heading Home

Posted in 2011 Student Summit by pemeticstudentsummit on March 25, 2011

We’re done with the closing and lunch, and we’re cleaning up the gym after a successful and fun Summit.

The planning team will gather for reflections, then we’ll be able to post about our overall experiences at this event.

Until then, here are more pictures!

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Thank You to Our Sponsors

Posted in 2011 Student Summit by KIDS Consortium on March 25, 2011

An event like the KIDS Consortium Student Summit can’t happen without a lot of support–a lot of time, energy, dedication, and money.

We want to thank all of the sponsors of this year’s Summit:

  • Downeast Energy
  • Learn and Serve America program of the Corporation for National and Community Service
  • People’s United Bank
  • Ames & Gough Insurance
  • Woodard & Curran
  • Gorham Savings Bank
  • The First
  • Bangor Hydro
  • Bar Harbor Bank & Trust
  • The Joseph McKeen Center for the Common Good at Bowdoin College
  • Summit Environmental Consultants
  • Summit Geoengineering Services
  • S.W. Cole Engineering
  • Normandeau Associates

To each of these companies: We couldn’t have done it without you!

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Presentations Day 2 Part 2

Posted in 2011 Student Summit by pemeticstudentsummit on March 25, 2011

After participating in the pipeline teambuilder, people worked their way over to Sills Hall. Sitting in Smith Auditorium people are beginning to file in for the first presentation of this session, the 3rd grade class at Sherwood Heights Elementary school in Auburn, Maine. They are presenting “One Step at a Time”. The students noticed that many items that should have been recycled or composted were being thrown away. So, they recycled and composted, along with coming up with new and different ways to keep things out of the trash.

The second presentation is by Oxford Hills Compressive High School. It is called “Keeping Phosphorus Out of Two Maine Lakes”. They wanted to clean up two Maine Lakes. Some ideas to stop pollution were about stopping the erosion at one lake. They want to put up buffers so that the erosion wouldn’t take over the lake.

Jake and William asked, “What have you learned in the past few days?” Other questions like it encouraged energetic responses. Now it’s off to closing teambuilders, reflection, and lunch!


Sills Hall at Bowdoin College, where the students presented their work.

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The Busy Morning So Far

Posted in 2011 Student Summit by pemeticstudentsummit on March 25, 2011

This morning, there have been a lot of events happening at the KIDS Consortium student summit:

1. First off, we did another icebreaker activity. This icebreaker was called two truths and one lie. Each person was split into their groups (each group had different students and adults from different schools), and they were to write three things about themselves: two of the things true, and one a lie. The groups went around in a circle, one person at a time stating their two truths and one lie, and the group was going to guess which person’s “fact” was the lie. It helped everyone to get to know each other better.

2. Next, we heard from a guest speaker at Bowdoin College. Her name was Keisha Payson, and she is the sustainability coordinator at Bowdoin College. She told us about the different projects that Bowdoin College was doing so their campus could become more green and environmentally friendly. Some of the projects were: composting in cafeterias, using solar panels for hot water heaters, turning out the lights if the room is not in use, and recycling in the dorms and other areas around the campus. The goal Bowdoin is aiming for is to become totally and completely carbon neutral by 2020.

3. Although the early morning activities were a lot of fun, the student presentations were also important. Some of the presentations I saw were: changing out styrofoam trays used in the cafeteria into plastic reusable trays, recycling more in school, and switching the light bulbs from energy wasters to energy savers. Kids seemed to feel proud of their projects that they had worked hard on and what they had accomplished throughout the year.

Next, the team builder activity and exhibit scavenger hunt will be happening. Sounds like fun!

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Good Morning!

Posted in 2011 Student Summit by pemeticstudentsummit on March 25, 2011

Welcome back to Day 2 of the Student Summit! We have another day ahead of us with more presentations, exhibits and food. Those attending are dribbling into Morell Gym after a leisurely breakfast. After last night’s dance and closing, kids went back to hotels, played in the pool and enjoyed relaxing–and some practiced for their second presentations tomorrow.


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Dinner & Dance

Posted in 2011 Student Summit by pemeticstudentsummit on March 24, 2011

Dinner was located in Thorne Hall. The Ice Cream was delicious and we all enjoyed being able to talk about our day. But, wait we still have more to come. The dance is just beginning and so is the fun! With a playlist that carries the theme of the summit we won’t forget what it’s about while we are having fun.


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Teambuilders, Exhibits, and Presentations, Oh My!

Posted in 2011 Student Summit by pemeticstudentsummit on March 24, 2011

After the first set of presentations, one-half of the participants at the Summit participated in a teambuilding activity while the other half did a scavenger hunt through the many exhibits. Now we are in the second set of student presentations.

Three student teams present in each room in each hour-long presentation slot. In just one room in the second presentation timeslot today, we saw two teams from Roosevelt Middle School in New Bedford, Massachusetts present different projects, with great data about trash, recycling, and energy use in their school, and a third presentation by Ashland, Maine students called “Mean Green Recycling Machines.”

For example, students monitored how many students left laptops on and plugged in when they weren’t in use. Then they launched an energy awareness and conservation campaign, reading books to young students and talking about how to save energy. They also shared a short video from

“I liked their [Ashland, Maine’s] presentation because they talked about Terracycle and different ways to recycle. I liked mine because it’s telling our whole school to start recycling more, or else there will be more trash and it will damage the earth and be unhealthy, ” said DaVante Cromwell, a sixth-grader at Roosevelt Middle School.

“I like how we can help everybody in the community, and they can help us too. I like that we can share our ideas with them,” said Marissa Lopes, an eighth-grader from Roosevelt Middle School.

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The adults are happy that the kids are engaged, too. One teacher said, “Since we started doing this, I haven’t heard a single student say, ‘What do we have to learn this for?'”

A Summit Slideshow

Posted in 2011 Student Summit by pemeticstudentsummit on March 24, 2011

Only halfway through the first day, and we’ve already shared all of these moments…and more!

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Student Presentations beginning…

Posted in 2011 Student Summit by pemeticstudentsummit on March 24, 2011

The main purpose of the KIDS Consortium service-learning student summit is sharing and celebrating the service learning projects with everyone else to show what the groups are doing to make a difference in greening their communities.

This is exactly what happened at the summit. Schools from all around New England plus New York presented what they had been working on for their service learning projects all year. The groups shared their projects, questions were asked, and people learned new information along the way.

Presentations differed from composting in their school to recycling to preventing invasive species from moving into their town. Although the projects were diverse, each was important in changing the communities in which the schools’ were located in.

One quote heard at the student presentations: “We really learned a lot by doing this service learning project.”

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Posted in 2011 Student Summit by pemeticstudentsummit on March 24, 2011

An ice breaker is an activity that  helps people meet others literally to “break the ice” between groups. Here at the summit, there were many kids that did not know each other. The ice breaker activity helped kids to get to know each other better.

The first icebreaker used was called a wordle. A wordle is a group of words that are all related to the same topic. Our motto, “Make a Difference” was the theme of this worlde. Kids and teachers were to brainstorm ideas and words that meant “Make a Difference” to them. Words commonly used were: Recycling, Teamwork, Service learning, and effort.

The summit’s message really stresses that kids can make a difference in their school, community, and world. This wordle got kids thinking about what qualities were really needed to make a difference.

Now, everyone is getting a quick snack, then we are all headed over to Sills Hall at Bowdoin College to watch what we’re really here for: the student presentations!

Thinking hard...


Group discussion about Making a Difference words

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Keynote Complete

Posted in 2011 Student Summit by pemeticstudentsummit on March 24, 2011

Sen. Dennis Damon spoke about what it means to make a difference.

He paraphrased Martin Luther King Jr., saying that it is the content of our character that matters. Now we’ll paraphrase Senator Damon: It takes three things to make a difference:

  1. Care about something or someone other than yourself.
  2. Find your inner strength.
  3. Follow through with action.

It is through our actions, even more than our words, that we make a difference. That’s why we’re proud to be here sharing service-learning projects. The student teams here at the Summit today are all taking action in their schools and communities to help the environment.

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Summit Start 3,2,1 Blastoff

Posted in 2011 Student Summit by pemeticstudentsummit on March 24, 2011

As schools and groups arrive a warm welcome is provided. All are excited for the festivities to begin. With the “3 R’s” playing in the background everyone is ready to begin the summit. Approximately 11 1/2 groups have already arrived. On this chilly day in late March everyone is glad to be inside celebrating environmental ideas!

Another perspective on the Summit prep!

Keynote Speaker, former state senator Denis Damon, has arrived and is talking with KIDS Consortium  creator Marvin Rosenblum.

Keynote speaker Dennis Damon talks with Marvin Rosenblum, founder of KIDS Consortium, before the Summit begins.

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Setting Up the 2011 Student Summit

Posted in 2011 Student Summit by KIDS Consortium on March 24, 2011

The Pemetic students and teachers, the KIDS Consortium staff, and Bowdoin facilities staff have been gathered at Morrell Gym at Bowdoin College since early this morning setting up for the Summit.

We’ll be getting started at noon, and Sara and Margaret, student planners, will be blogging live!

The student planning team gathers together before splitting off into teams to set up for the Summit.

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Grants for Service-Learning Projects

Posted in Project Funding, Service-Learning by KIDS Consortium on March 4, 2011

We’re just passing this information along because we know many of you are working on environmental and hunger-related issues in your service-learning projects. Several grants related to service-learning have upcoming deadlines:

  • Sodexo Youth Grants: YSA (Youth Service America) and Sodexo will award 100 grants of $500 each to young people, ages 5-25, who are working on projects that address the issue of childhood hunger on Global Youth Service Day (April 15-17, 2011). Deadline: March 14.
  • Disney Friends for Change Grants: YSA (Youth Service America) and Disney provide grants for youth-led service projects that focus on making environmentally friendly changes and engage youth on Global Youth Service Day, April 15-17. Fifty $500 grants will be awarded. Applicants must be between the ages of 5-25 and be associated with a school or organization. Deadline: March 10
  • Sodexo School Engagement Grants: Ten grants of $5,000 will be awarded to teachers to implement a service-learning “Semester of Service” focused on childhood hunger, starting in September 2011 (Hunger Action Month) and going through Hunger & Homelessness Awareness Week (November 14-20, 2011). Deadline March 18. Learn more at

There’s also a “Green Your School” Challenge from that may dovetail nicely with service-learning projects that involve improving environmental sustainability at school:

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