Illinois EPA Launches Annual
Environmental Education Competition for Fifth and Sixth Grade
Agency Encourages Youth Creativity About
How to Protect the Environment
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[January 15, 2020]
- Fifth and sixth grade writers and artists from around Illinois are
invited to compete in this year’s Poster, Poetry and Prose Contest
sponsored by the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
This year’s contest theme is "Algae: The Good, the
Bad, and the Ugly... How Can You Keep Your Local Pond Healthy?"
focusing on how algae can affect waterbodies (good and bad).
The theme also emphasizes how to prevent nonpoint
source pollution, including nutrient runoff, to maintain healthy
water ecosystems. Educators are asked to introduce these topics
using the Illinois EPA’s newly developed, free curriculum:
"Environmental Pathways surface water unit Why is the Pond Green?"
The unit was developed by the Office for Mathematics, Science, and
Technology Education (MSTE) at the University of Illinois
Urbana-Champaign and is aligned with Next Generation Science
Each school can enter up to eight works (four posters and four
written) depicting this year’s theme.
Entries must be postmarked and sent in to the Illinois EPA by
February 3, 2020.
An in house panel from the Illinois EPA will judge
all entries to select the finalists, and those entries will then be
judged by an outside panel of authorities to determine the top
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All finalists, together with their families and teachers, will be
invited to an awards ceremony and reception on April 18 at the Old State Capitol
historic site in Springfield. After the awards ceremony, participants are
invited to attend the City of Springfield’s Earth Awareness Fair on the Old
State Capitol’s lawn. Finalist entries will be on exhibit in the atrium of the
Illinois EPA’s headquarters building in Springfield from April 20 through May
13, and the top winners will be featured on the Illinois EPA’s website.
Information about the annual event can be obtained on Illinois EPA’s website at:
https://www2.illinois.gov/ epa/topics/ education/contest/Pages/efault.aspx,
or by contacting Kristi Morris, Environmental Education Coordinator for the
Illinois EPA, at 217-558-7198, or by email at
The Environmental Pathways curriculum unit can be found at:
[Illinois Office of Communication and