Kids Want to Save the Planet Too

How to get kids involved in thinking more about the environment? Turns out they do a pretty good job at it, if given a chance. Before the G8 summit in Japan, students from high schools took part in a Hokkaido High School Environmental Summit in Toyako.

Students at Kamikawa High School discussed their six year long project to test the water quality of the Ishikari River, which runs through the town. Another presentation related how a High School in Hakodate City installed a rainwater tank on top of its gymnasium, using rainwater collected in the tank to flush school toilets. And kids from Tomakomai Technical High School in Tomakomai City explained how the school has been turning waste oil from the cafeterias of local companies into bio-diesel fuel.

Written by Martin Frid, greenz.jp

On October 28 the students got a chance to present their High School Summit Declaration directly to Hokkaido Governor Takahashi Harumi. The declaration expresses the students' pledge to do their best to protect the world's natural environment and to preserve their unspoiled home of Hokkaido throughout their daily lives.

Another event was held in May, 2008 in Kobe, to highlight children and the environment. The Youth Summit for Environment in Kobe brought together kids from Australia, Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, China, Taiwan, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Iran, Italy, Kenya, Mexico, Mongolia, Nepal, Russia, South Africa, England and the US for three days of lectures, events and music.

The workshops had a serious focus - how will the world look 10 later, and what should we do now in order to make Earth a beautiful place by then?

Many schools around the country are holding events to discuss climate change, recycling, or do observational research on wild birds, fish, plants, and other local wildlife. Making a presentation in front of the other classmates is an important part of learning, but getting out of the classroom is also important.

Japan's Riverside Fun School Project is a national project for the promotion of riverside environmental education. It creates a system to facilitate children's activities at riversides, allowing children to play safely, learn how to paddle a canoe, and get in touch with the riverside natural environment. Often the kids go out together in groups with a teacher to pick up garbage, like here in Kagoshima (below).

Links:
Japan Environmental Education Forum
The Japanese Society of Environmental Education
MOE: Environmental Education and Learning
Center for Supporting Children's Waterside Activities

Tags: Education | Japan