"Protesting is not enough!" Pupils take their climate action to the next level with a Ducky climate contest!
Success Story | Firda VGS
Firda High school
County: Sogn og Fjordane, Norway
Number of participants: 119
When:28th of March 2019
More than 100 pupils at Firda VGS participated in a Climate Challenge. The pupil’s group who were given the task to organize the Challenge took full responsibility and ownership of mobilizing the 100 pupils in a one-week competition.
The goal of the pilot project was to reduce carbon emissions, gain awareness and knowledge about sustainability, and have a fun and meaningful experience all at the same time.
The group recruited 6 classes, taught them climate engagement and action, and introduced them to how they could reduce their personal footprint with easy actions. The only thing the school had to do was sign up for the Climate Challenge.
Pupils can do it. When they want to!
Spurred on by a call to action from Hans Græsli, a teacher at their High School, his climate and environmental science class decided to take action to organize and lead a Ducky Climate Challenge. All the teacher had to do was offer a guiding hand to help with engagement.
Give them their head and youngsters will explore!
The overall goal was to stimulate the pupil’s curiosity and increase their awareness in sustainability using tasks from the Ducky Teaching Kit.
The classes started by learning about their carbon footprint using the Ducky Climate Calculator after which the 119 pupils started the Challenge in earnest.
Taking charge can be fun!
The teams created a plan, divided themselves up effectively and set things up for success. A ‘kick-off’ team made sure everyone understood what was going to happen in the Challenge and got everyone fired up to compete. They also led an interesting discussion about climate issues such as eating meat, the fashion industry and buying second hand products. They all learned a lot.
Finally a social media team was set up to continue the dialogue and motivate the participants through stories and social posting.
6 classes competed to save the most CO2e in a one week climate challenge
And the results?
Everyone agreed that the Climate Challenge was a huge success.
The Ducky Challenge helped the pupils focus on their actions and how they affected their carbon footprint. They also learned the power of collective action!
One of the most important things to emerge from the Challenge was the realization by the youngsters that they weren’t helpless. They could make a difference every day, by doing simple things together.
The power of shared achievement is a wonderful thing!
Everyone is a winner!
It wasn’t just the pupils that benefited. The staff also played their part and learned about the issues in a more direct way. Even the Principal, Hallgeir Hansen, pitched in to inspire the participants, which helped a lot to maintain all round motivation.
Because the Challenge was so successful, the school will now join with 10 other schools in the Sogn & Fjordane County to compete in the first National Climate Championship in January 2020.
The project was done by pupils in the climate- and environmental science class at Firda VGS. This is a course that teachers at Firda have set up as a pilot project. They want to get this course approved at all schools in Norway!
Finally, everyone learned a valuable lesson. It’s not just about winning, it’s how you play the game that counts! Working together in teams with inspiring help from the staff and organizers contributed to a great time for all.
What an inspiration!
More success stories
The National Schools Championship this January saw eleven counties, fifty one schools and over 11,000 students compete. Participants saved enough CO2e in two weeks to roughly equal to driving a fossil car 2.5 round trips from the Earth to Moon. But most importantly the championship once again proved that no matter how young or old you are, you can do something to help with climate change.
If all Norwegians copied what the participants in The Plastic Challenge did, we would have reduced plastic bags by more than 10 million, single use coffee cups (and lids) by more than 1 million and picked up more than 260 tons of plastic – in just two weeks.
FEE Norway and Green Flag ran the Alcoa-Klimamesterskap 2019. In two weeks pupils at 7 high schools in Agder and Nordland reduced Co2e-emissions equivalent to a passenger flight flying 3 times around the earth.
A kindergarten took first place in Norway’s first unofficial Climate Championship. On the 30th of August, thousands of people around Norway shouted for political action for the climate. For ten companies this wasn’t enough, and followed with a two-week Championship.
Night-train to Oslo? Bike to work? Or on foot home from a fotball match? Some took things further than others when NTNU started their one year Ducky Campaign this spring, to motivate their employees to travel less and more environmentally-friendly.
More than 6 000 students in Telemark and Trøndelag show how powerful individual actions can be when it comes to reducing carbon emissions. Their savings would be equivalent to 40% of Norway’s total annual carbon emissions!
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