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Earth Hour Challenge to Schools

  • Alaska Zoo 4731 O'Malley Road Anchorage, AK, 99507 United States (map)

This year’s official Earth Hour is Saturday, March 24th, 2018 from 8:30pm to 9:30pm, but we ask that schools participate for a chosen hour during their school day to allow teachers and classes to participate as a whole on Friday, March 23rd, 2018.

Earth Hour is the largest environmental event in history!  Started in 2007 in Sydney, Australia with 2.2 million people and more than 2,100 businesses participating, it has grown to a worldwide event with hundreds of millions of people across 178 countries and territories switching off their lights for one hour, each year.  Earth Hour succeeds in being a global call to action to stand up, take responsibility, and lead the global journey to a sustainable future.  Earth Hour encourages individuals, businesses and governments to show leadership on environmental solutions through their actions.  For more information on what Earth Hour is, please visit, or invite the Alaska Zoo out to your school to show you!

We would like to challenge each and every school, large and small, to participate in their own Earth Hour event in their school or classroom.  During this time (one hour) we ask that all non-essential lights and electronics be turned off and unplugged for the hour in celebration of worldwide energy conservation efforts.  An added bonus to this idea would be to also have the school, as a whole, turn down the thermostats 2 degrees for that day.  Think of things to go above and beyond the hour, these simple things make a lasting difference over time.

The Alaska Zoo Education Department has put together a packet of activities for the hour for teachers and their students to utilize during their class, or school’s, Earth Hour event.  These activities focus on energy efficiency or environmentally friendly activities for the students to both enjoy and learn from.

The Alaska Zoo Education Department is also offering a “pre-teaching” talk at each participating school about Earth Hour, climate change and it’s impacts, and most of all, things that we as individuals and community members can do to be more environmentally aware, and simply, more responsible.

Last year we had 35 schools, 526 teachers and staff, and 4,794 students meet our challenge!

For all schools, or classes, that pledge to participate in this Earth Hour challenge, the Alaska Zoo will display their participation at the Alaska Zoo’s community Earth Hour Event on Saturday, March 24th, 2018. Additionally, each school, or class, will be given a certificate to display at their school highlighting their participation in the Alaska Zoo’s Earth Hour challenge to schools.

Earth Hour is one hour out of an entire year; will your school choose the hour, take the challenge, and a make a difference?

Please let us know that you are participating in this event by calling or emailing Stephanie Hartman, Education Director, at 907-341-6463 or

The Anchorage School District does not endorse these materials or the viewpoints expressed in them.

Earlier Event: March 22
Critter Chat: Ball Python
Later Event: March 23
Critter Chat: Gray Wolf