We have developed an entire curriculum on eco-citizenship that is taught as its own content area, with a time set aside in the schedule for instruction. We discuss the concepts of waste, of deforestation and the earth, organic agriculture, free trade, different energies, global warming and pollution, bio-diversity, water, international solidarity…
The children learn eco-actions: to recycle, to save water and electricity, to take care of nature, to use scratch paper…We have added « Planet Manager » to the responsibilities that are decided each morning, awakening a new awareness of eco-actions each day. For example, in winter, the « Planet Manager » will lower the radiators when leaving the class at the end of the day. At the park, he/she will make sure that everyone takes care of the grass and the trees.
Being an actor
There is nothing worse than waiting 15 years, stuck between 4 walls, before being able to act in the world! Living School wants to give children, whose heartfelt intentions are generous and just, the possibility to act in the world now. We help make them aware of global issues (ecological catastrophes, problems with sustainable development, inequalities between the north and south…) Far from being distressed or discouraged by these issues, and because they are aware of their potential for creation, each year the children suggest initiatives and actions to change the world. Each year, after discussing with the children, we choose the actions we will carry out. Often, we work with organizations, such as NGOs, to accompany the children in the process and to help them realize their dreams.
Since the creation of the school, the children have contributed to:
- Save 7 children from hunger for 1 year, with the help of Action Against Hunger, based on the initiative launched by Elliott (who was 5 years old at the time);
- Replant 722 trees in Senegal and correspond with the children from the village near the site, with the help of Forest & Life (Kinomé);
- Give the gift of sight to a Bonobo et adopt two baby Bonobos, with the help of Claudine André;
- Allow one of the neighborhood’s homeless to spend multiple nights inside and warm, with the help of la Casa Del Tango and the students’ parents;
- Give joy to the residents at the retirement home in the neighborhood by singing and doing yoga all together;
- This year, the children proposed dozens of innovative projects and they experienced the democratic process by voting to select the project that will be carried out by the school: to help save endangered animals from disappearing.
Every day, we enjoy the Park des Buttes Chaumont. It’s our recreation center! It is also the time to talk about the trees and the birds, to discover the seasons and the vegetation.
Each year, we go to a forest to discover the trees, the richness and the importance of the earth. Professionals in reforestation from the ethical business Kinomé, founded by Nicolas Métro, guide our outings.
It is not rare that we visit shared or community gardens. We are carry out our own gardening regularly in and in front of the school.
Finally, every year we organize a Green School for all of the classes, for 3-5 days. It is an opportunity to better know what nature truly is, thanks to the talent of the Green School animators who lead us to discover the plants, the birds, the woodland creatures. With the animators we will also construct wooden cabins, dandelion flutes or acorn whistles… We have really gotten used to going to Croux every year!
Since 2010, we work to reduce our ecological imprint with the children, their parents and in their families. For example, we have put into place:
- A recycling of our vegetal waste with a vermicomposter;
- A group purchase of vermicomposters for interested families;
- A system of marking the children’s cups to limit machine washing;
- The regular use of scratch paper;
- A newsletter of recipes for seasonal fruits and veggies published by a student’s mother ;
- A bike-station in front of the school thanks to the mayor’s office…
- Living School has a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture). We support les paniers bio du Val de Loire an association of 35 organic farmers from the Region Centre, who delivers us organic vegetable and fruit baskets each week.