A Polar Bear Lesson in Hayward, California

Posted Jul. 22nd, 2015 by Jill Mangum

In early January, we received an email from kindergarten teacher, Ms. Echaves, of Palma Ceia Elementary School in Hayward, California, requesting to use Dan’s polar bear pictures for a common core polar bear lesson she wanted to create for her classroom.

The lesson she produced with the donated photos sparked a school-wide event for Earth Day, all centered around polar bears! Students in grades K-3 created posters and grades 4-6 students wrote essays on ways to help save polar bears. They also had a  “Walk to School for Earth Day” for all students in the school, helping polar bears by reducing car pollution.

We’re excited that the students at Palma Ceia had a very successful Earth Day. The school also celebrated Arbor Day, planting 12 trees and renovating the school garden. Way to go students of Palma Ceia Elementary School! See the winning essays and posters created for Earth Day below 🙂

Ceia Essay and Poster Winners

Right to left: Aiden Hui (1st place K-3), Analyse Santos (honorable mention), Ashneel Singh (3rd place K-3), Morgan Real (honorable mention), Daniela Paylayo (1st place 4-6), Van Trinh (2nd place 4-6), Justin Hui (3rd place 4-6)

“I want to thank you again for letting us use Daniel’s photographs. One more thing I wanted to share was what one of the students said. He told his teacher,” I’m the polar bear guy because my birthday is on Earth Day and it was my idea to do something for Earth Day.” The teacher told me how proud he was and how it was great for his self-esteem. He is a student in one of our special day education classes. His teacher communicated with me he wanted to be part of an earth day activity because it was his special day.  He read his essay over the school intercom and did the reminder for Earth Day/Walk to School Day. I can’t tell you enough how great this has been for our school. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!”

– Ms. Echaves, Palma Ceia Elementary School

Since the common core polar bear lesson was so successful, Ms. Echaves will be publishing it on a website called Teachers Pay Teachers. Teachers Pay Teachers allows teachers to share their knowledge with the entire world and gives any profits from sales back to the teachers themselves. Educating young people about conservation and reinvesting in the folks who teach the children of the future seems like a win-win to us!

Winning Essays, Grades 4-6

Click on the image below to read the student’s essays on polar bears.

Daniela Paylayo

1st Place by Daniela Paylayo

Earth Day

2nd place by Van Trinh

Justin Hui- Save the Polar Bears (2)

3rd place by Justin Hui

Earth Day

Honorable mention by Morgan Real

Saving the Polar Bears

Honorably mention by Analyse Santos

Reduce Your Carbon Footprint

1st place (K-3) by Aiden Hui

Winning Posters, Grades K-3


1st place by Aiden Hui


2nd place by Adan Pachaco

Adan Pacheco

Second place poster winner Adan Pacheco.


3rd place by Ashneel Singh

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