How would our planet look like if the decisions concerning its future were taken by children? Would the states of the world ally to save it or would each of them act in a selfish manner, depending on their own economic and political interests? These are just some of the challenges that have tested the students of the Heritage International School for 2 hours, during which time they experienced the “Keep Cool” interactive game. Besides learning the art of negotiation, learners have tested their knowledge of climate change and have better understood its effects.
The most interactive and dynamic game of the hour – “Keep Cool” – got to Heritage as well, and the first to try it were the 7th and 8th grade students who threw the dice and bet on the climate.
Each participant played the role of a country or a group of states (USA and its partners, Europe, the newly industrialized countries, the former USSR, developing countries and OPEC), discovering their negotiating skills and their ability to collaborate. Together, the “international actors” managed to intervene in order to minimize the consequences of natural disasters. This way, the floods in Central Europe or drought in California have been prevented, and the impact of forest fires in Australia and landslides in Central Asia have been significantly diminished. Although they had different political and economic objectives, the students have understood that they have to join forces for a common purpose – to save the planet.
The experience has been extremely interesting, and through the innovative game, students have better understood what global warming means and how green energy can prevent pollution. Therefore, they have committed themselves to being more responsible for the environment in the future.
Nicolae Sula, Heritage student: “In this game, if you have more factories based on carbon emissions, more points are taken from the ecological bank, which damages the environment. If you own more green energy plants, the money is taken from the global bank, and so the likelihood of natural disasters is lower.”
Loredana Sandu, Heritage student: “The game is educational and helps to promote the idea of keeping the globe clean. It also inspires us to have more ecological initiatives and to develop them. Natural disasters have a huge impact on countries around the world, and this game has helped us to realize their extent, o understand how we can solve these problems, and that, in fact, we can change the world.”
Laurentiu Galateanu, Heritage student: “Through this game, I was able to understand how global negotiations take place, how the big investments are made. Since everything is based on real facts, I think the situations we have simulated will be of great help to me in the future.”
Such activities take place at the Heritage International School as part of the Corporate Social Responsibility dedicated program called “GO Heritage”, through which students get involved in the community development, participate in innovative educational projects and protect the environment, thus contributing directly to making the world a better place.
Inga Chiosa, interim Director of Heritage: “We are always looking for interesting activities for our students, and this game is not only interesting, it is also useful. We believe that social responsibility is being learned at school, that is why we carry out multiple actions that aim to educate an ecologically responsible generation. We have ecological posters in school, we mark the “Plastic-free Day”, during which students give up plastic cups and drink from reusable bottles. We believe that these actions give children the opportunity to understand their role and the impact of their decisions.”
“Keep Cool” was first played in Moldova in 2009 and aims to promote the knowledge about climate changes in order to help the participants understand the challenges of the field.
Ion Ungureanu, representative of the EcoVisio Association, “Keep Cool” trainer: “Through the game, children learn to negotiate, invest, think strategically, including from the perspective of climate change. When the payments to improve the effects of natural disasters increase, participants understand that they must act together to prevent global disasters and diminish their consequences.”
The “Keep Cool” board game is intended for both children and adults, and was created in 2004 by two German researchers. They aimed to help people better understand the effects of global warming and sustainable economy. Currently, the game is played in several countries around the world, including Moldova, Romania and Ukraine.
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