The Grade 7 French immersion class from Rossland Summit School marched into downtown Rossland on Tuesday afternoon to raise awareness about climate change.
The class is celebrating COP21 and learning about climate change all this week.
Students got to experience what it’s like to participate in their very own climate march, making signs with catchy slogans and standing on Columbia Ave. outside and across from Ferraro Foods, getting drivers going by to honk their support.
“We are walking around with signs that we made that have nice catchphrases and stuff, of how you could stop the pollution and waste of garbage and litter,” explained Chaselyn Robillard.
“I’m looking forward to helping people be aware of what’s happening about climate change and that it is not indeed a myth, it is real,” said Avery (who declined to share her last name).
The students are learning a different lesson each day of the week.
On Monday they took a pledge to do their small part for the environment.
Annataya Tatareczuk pledged to use a single water bottle instead of throwing plastic water bottles in the trash.
“I found a fact that worldwide over $100 million is spent a day on water bottles, 75 per cent of that is wasted and polluted, and 25 per cent is recycled,” she said. “So we’re trying to work on using one and using less money.”
Each student had to learn three statistics related to their pledge.
Madeline Clarke learned about the environmental costs of raising livestock for hers.
“[Animals] use up so much land and so much water, and so I was learning how 70 per cent of all the world’s fresh water, that’s drinkable, is actually going to our animals,” she explained.
Eben Sirgis also looked up facts on raising livestock and pledged to only eat beef twice a month.
“It was about the many resources and water and land that food takes up, but I was focusing in more specifically on beef,” he explained. “[It] takes 6,809 liters of water to make one pound of beef.”
Wednesday the COP21 celebration continued, with each student pretending to be from a different nation and sharing environmental concerns and statistics from that nation.
Thursday the students are having a mock rally in class.
“They get to do little speeches about what [they’re passionate about] or watch little videos that they found,” explained their teacher, Véronique Darwin.
Friday they will watch an environmental film of their choosing.