The UN and all others involved in the development of this goal recognized that worldwide material consumption has expanded rapidly and our ecosystem is not going to be able to keep up much longer with the production and consumption of natural resources used to make consumer goods and fuel used in our countries.
We used the time during this unit to teach students about different economy models; linear and circular with the end goal of students working towards designing a product or service that fit within a circular (or sharing) economy model. Not only were students learning the issues at hand but they were also contributing sustainable ideas that our own community could activate on in an effort to be less wasteful and more mindful of how we are contributing to over consumption and production of goods and services. For access to the full project details click here.
The final assessment for this unit was designed to model the ‘Shark Tank’ television show for which parents, teachers, and other community members were invited to participate as the sharks or investors and question the students on their sustainable product and service design and determine if they would indeed invest in their ideas.
The students worked over the course of two weeks following the design thinking process to generate ideas of viable products or services that fit within a circular or shared economy model. From this process a few standout project included:
- A group that designed a ride share app so students who did not take the Green School BioBus could carpool to school in a more environmentally friendly way.
- A group that developed a plan for a water refill station for the local banjar to help eliminate the overuse of single use water bottles,
- A group that designed an in house sharing system for stationary use in the middle school division
- A group that designed more sustainable toilets for the Green School.
This project not only contributed to the Green School mission of “A Community of Learners Making our World Sustainable” but also created a space in which students could innovate, collaborate, and provide ‘real-life’ solutions to ‘real-life’ problems in our own community.