School News

No More World Oil? Ninth Graders Seek Solutions
Posted 09/25/2013 12:00AM

What if we knew that the world was going to run out of oil within seven years? The ninth graders in John Sharon's Global Studies class recently wrestled with this looming "crisis," researching and brainstorming solutions while participating in a simulation called Sustainability Challenge 2021.

Originally designed by John, who chairs the Social Studies department, and Fenn's Director of Sustainability, Cameren Cousins, the scenario involves students representing different nations or non-government organizations at a summit where scientists have announced that the world is to run out of oil by the year 2021. Students had to research and discuss viable solutions to the "crisis" and offer proposals on which everyone at the summit could agree.

"They were amazing," says John of his students, who presented their proposals and attempted to persuade other groups of the validity of their suggestions. "They took the challenge seriously and engaged in realistic, outside-the-box thinking," he adds. "Activities like this engage students fully and prepare them to be change agents and problem solvers when they get out into the world."

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