Empowering students and teachers to create a sustainable future
Teachers who will participate at the European Science on Stage festival 2022 as a Joint Project tell us the story of their collaboration. This blog post was written by Anders Floren from Sweden, Iro Koliakou from Greece and Maria Zambrotta from Italy.
Can we live without plastic? Can the 3Rs (reduce, reuse, recycle) approach combat the plastic waste problem? Are biopolymers the solution for a sustainable future?
Three teachers from three different countries, Anders Floren from Sweden, Iro Koliakou from Greece and Maria Zambrotta from Italy worked together to find answers to these questions with their joint project “The 3Rs and products of the future”
The project originates from the necessity of using raw materials to make everyday products from recycled materials. It highlights the unsustainable impact of our daily practices.
The activities focus on producing bio-based products that are otherwise unsustainably produced. Products wholly or partly derived from biomass, such as plants, trees, or animals. After an introduction to polymers and the 3Rs (reuse, reduce, recycle) students complete three labs/project subunits. Bioplastics, production of cement from mussels, and Keratin extraction from wool.
The three teachers met and collaborated through the Science on Stage project "Sustainability in STEM Education". In this two-year project, 20 international teachers work together to discuss and test ideas on how to implement the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in STEM lessons. The goal is to create concrete and hands-on teaching concepts that encourage students to become active and responsible citizens while promoting their interest in STEM.
This project is a driving force for the three teachers, inspiring them to be creative during the last difficult year. Meetings were only held online and often under difficult circumstances due to bad connections.
Project activities were only partially tested in the classroom as schools were closed for most of the year. All protocols are planned for implementation in the classroom during the next school year.
Anders, Iro, and Maria are thrilled to be part of the Science on Stage festival in Prague as this will give them the opportunity to finally meet in person!