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Challenge... Print E-mail

Earth Day Annual Lights Out Challenge Instructions

All schools and district central departments are challenged all to celebrate Earth Day on April 22nd by practicing energy conservation.

All schools and central services departments are encouraged to turn off their lights and other energy consuming devices for one hour or more that day. This event is intended to increase awareness of our district’s impact on the environment and help bring about actions to reduce it.

Participation is easy, just follow these steps:

  1. Classrooms, schools, and departments that wish to participate are asked to send a confirmation e-mail to EnviroMatters. Include your name, and/or the name of the school or department. All participating schools and departments will be sent an electronic information package with further directions.
  2. Participating classrooms, schools, or departments will be sent an electronic Lights Out Spreadsheet that will allow them to calculate the energy savings, as well as the resulting reductions in carbon dioxide emissions. 
  3. Talk with others in your school or department to let them know about the Earth Day challenge and how they can participate.
  4. Turn off the lights on April 22nd for one hour or more that day (only where safe and practical to do so). While the lights are out you can carry on with your regular routine.
  5. Participants may forward individual spreadsheets for each classroom, or school totals to EnviroMatters.

EnviroMatters will be calculating the totals and posting them on the EnviroMatters website following Earth Day.

Continue to Save! Put energy and environmental saving actions into your everyday practice. Always turn off lights and equipment such as computer monitors or Smartboards when unused or leaving a room for 10 minutes or more. Turn off power bars and other equipment when leaving the school nightly.


On Earth Day you can take time to have a classroom discussion or to take part in an activity that increases awareness of environmental impact. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Talk about the impact of turning off the lights for one hour. What did the calculations show?
  • Read a book or article about the environment and our impact upon it. There are also books on recycling, water conservation, energy conservation and conserving natural spaces.
  • What can we do at all schools to help the environment?  Discuss or debate environmental or alternative energy issues.
  • Contact the This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it Office to get a free set of "Lights Out" stickers and work as a group to place them on light switches and electronic devices around the classroom or school.
  • Designate “Energy Monitors” who will take turns ensuring lights and other electrical items are turned off when not in use during recess, lunch, or after school. Create a class checklist of items to be checked or contact the EnviroMatters Office for a free copy of the Classroom Energy Monitor Checklist.
  • Teachers may visit the Earth Day Canada website to select activities or lessons that students can participate in to learn more about energy conservation. 
  • Classrooms or schools may invite a community speaker to talk about the environment.
  • Teachers may take their students outside to participate in an activity or nature walk. Take part in the City of Edmonton’s School Yard Cleanup!
  • Look for environmental projects or activities in the school or outdoors.
  • Try “business as usual” to see the difference the lights make.
  • Reflect upon the lights out event. Is there part of these actions that could be practiced every day? Are there similar actions that can be taken at home?
  • Get involved! Sign up and commit to One Simple Act on the Government of Alberta website.