Heritage International School, honoured with prestigious “Climate Action Project School of Excellence” award

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Heritage International School, honoured with prestigious “Climate Action Project School of Excellence” award

10 November 2021

Heritage International School has been chosen among the best 250 institutions in the world that aim to change students’ behaviour and societies’ mindset concerning climate change through education. On the 4th of November Heritage was honoured with the “Climate Action Project Schools of Excellence” award.

The Heritage team’s work has been recognized for meeting extensive criteria, including a school-wide commitment to climate education and student solutions. The school was the first to join the Climate Action project in June 2020 and since then Heritage educators designed a program of various learning activities in order to research the subject of climate change, to find solutions and to come up with an action plan.

Tatiana Popa, Country Ambassador of “Climate Action Project” in Moldova: “Little by little, our students embrace the challenge and change their behaviour towards nature, also inviting their families and friends to do so. It's very motivating for them to be part of a global team of change-makers, as this illustrates the impact clearly and involves the wider community, not only our school. This year we managed to invite the Minister of Environment, Ms. Iuliana Cantaragiu, to speak at Climate Action Day and to show support for all educators and students from Moldova. We felt very proud to have her support in a global audience. This project is very important as it helps give young people a voice to raise awareness about the environmental crisis, thus taking action for our future!”

Climate Action Project is a free, student-centered global education initiative, set to raise awareness about environmental issues and solutions, involving 2,700,000 teachers and students across 146 countries. The project aims to help students learn about the climate crisis in authentic ways and disseminate solutions online. It is organized in collaboration with WWF and NASA, supported by scientists and public figures, but also covered by media across 45 countries including BBC, CNN and National Geographic.

Iuliana Cantaragiu, Minister of Environment: “I would like to welcome the outcome of the Climate Action Project at the global level and in the Republic of Moldova. The education for climate change is an important part of environmental education and education for sustainable development. We need to move towards a more sustainable and climate friendly production consumption. The Republic of Moldova is fully aware of steps that need to be taken and is working towards their implementation. By ratifying the Paris Agreement, the Republic of Moldova has announced its intention to contribute to the mitigation of climate change so that the process evolves in line with the natural trends of the pre-industrial development period of humankind. The priorities of the Republic of Moldova in greenhouse gas emission deduction refers to the extension of forest areas, implementation of efficient waste management technologies moving to a green and circular economy, improvement of energy efficiency, promotion of renewable energy sources and responsible use of water resources. We need clever and multilaterally prepared people who will be able to implement these measures in order to create green job opportunities for which the role of education in the field of climate the circular economy would be crucial.”

During the 6-week journey teachers and students from across 146 countries connect and collaborate. The main benefits of the Climate Action Project are that the students mainly learn by doing and playing, develop their creativity and critical thinking. The interactions with global experts help them discover and explore the different types of climate change in the world and implement solutions together.

Adriana Bujag, Primary school teacher: “By participating in the “Climate Action” Project, we realized that education has no borders and responsibility for our future is a common task. We had meetings with meteorologists, with students from Romania, even a mother of a student came up with the idea to organize a webinar in which she talked to the children about compost. Our Science lessons, held in the schoolyard, have become attractive, interesting and different. Tasks have gone beyond the classroom – children have talked in the family about climate change, the causes and effects of climate change on our lives, they have become more responsible and eager to act.”

The students also came up with the idea of “Meat-free Monday” – it was instantly accepted as brilliant and implemented in the school canteen.

Vasile Chiper, English language and Science teacher: “The project implemented with the 5th grade students was a great opportunity for children to get into the subject of climate change. Children really enjoyed getting involved in the projects and presenting their own visions on several environmental issues. They came up with many innovative ideas, like creating 3D posters and interactive online quizzes.”

Sanda Bostan, 9th grade student: “Participating in the Climate Action Project, I had the opportunity to talk to NASA engineers and ask questions. I felt honoured and very happy to have this opportunity and to be in the presence of such personalities. Thanks to this experience, I learned many more things from behind the scenes of NASA and curiosities about the current state of the planet in relation to climate change. I recommend other students to get involved in such projects, it will help them develop public speaking skills and gain more knowledge about climate change and our planet.”

Heritage, having as guest speaker the British Ambassador to Moldova, ran a COBIS webinar on teaching sustainability through project-based learning. The students and their teacher shared ideas on how to raise responsible citizens, with prospects for a greener future with renewable energy and solutions that would benefit the environment immensely. Moreover, as a part of the Climate Action Project, Heritage students planted trees in the school yard and received an invitation to the British Embassy last autumn to plant trees in the embassy garden, together with the British, French, Italian and Latvian Ambassadors.

There have been many meaningful interactions and thrilling speeches during the Climate Action Day event, with guests and speakers like Prince William of Great Britain, former President Michel from Seychelles, Princess Esmeralda of Belgium, Elizabeth Wathuti, Cardinal Peter Turkson, representatives from UNEP, WWF, NASA and many more. Watch the entire video of the event: https://youtu.be/h1LpoW5_5Vg

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