Gouatsou Mélissa, 1G4
Find out more about the EcoClubs project of the 1G4 of the Lycée Uruguay France, led by Ms Lefebvre and Ms Jarrousse, a project to improve the environmental impact of our high school.
During the 2022/2023 school year, our English teacher, Ms Lefebvre, enrolled us in a project called EcoClubs, in which other classes and schools participated. At the end of the school year, on May 11, 2023, we presented our projects at the Centrale Supélec in Paris Saclay, a very reputable engineering school, and spent the day there. I will first present our ideas and projects, then the organization before the presentation at Centrale Supélec, and finally our day at Centrale Supélec.
Our project ideas were against the degradation of walls or school materials. So we came up with a free expression wall so that anyone passing by can express themselves with freedom and without degrading anything. Then, we thought of an art club for those who have fun drawing everywhere but also for people who want to create projects themselves or have a time in high school devoted to art. Some people also have fun stealing school supplies or even thermostatic valves, so we got the idea to take a 3D printer that could reproduce some and that could be used for SNT classes for example. Of course, we thought about food waste and the enormous amount of meat we consume, so we thought of a week with only vegetarian dishes that we could have once a year. This idea was impossible to achieve because of the law requiring school cafeterias to serve various meats in the week, but fortunately, this law also requires one day of vegetarian dishes every week. We have donation tables in our canteen, they consist of putting down food that you have not eaten, for example yogurt, sugar, fruit, etc… but this table does not respect the temperature conditions of the food and especially for fresh products, so we thought of installing refrigerators to help preserve them for the following meals. For food waste, there are already separate bins but we spiced them up by making posters ourselves.
Because we can’t force everyone to eat everything, we can just send messages and display beautiful posters in the canteen reminding them to be especially careful.
During the year we decided to contact the chef of our canteen and the school administrator, who also looks after the canteen, to learn more about how it works in our school. We learned that high school garbage costs 38,000 euros a year and that the high school food waste is methanised. This is a biological process of degradation of organic matter. The energy of methanisation is used for heatings buildings. We also learned that the BD building is rented and does not belong to the school, so any repair costs are more expensive. The chef told us that she made the menus herself and tried to make them according to our tastes at the same time to respect the laws. She says that there is a lot of food waste and that they have made several changes in the canteen, for example, putting bread at the end of the line so that we are aware of how much we can actually eat. They even changed the slices of bread to rolls (two rolls per person) in order to encourage people to take a reasonable amount.
Our teacher contacted a professional graffiti artist called Bows with the permission of the school officials to work with us on this project. We met him for a day in two separate groups and produced posters indicating what to put in the sorting bins, to promote the donation tables and also painted a mural with an Eco-message on a wall. The class chose the slogan «Think Greeny» but it was difficult to choose between all of the ones that had been submitted. We learned a little more about Street Art thanks to him. Did you know, for example, that it is an art form that has always been associated with defending causes ? It was a fun day, which was definitely different to our typical routine ! This project really added a splash of color to our school cafeteria and in a very stylish way.
Always with the permission of the institution, the Free Expression wall in la Vie Scolaire will be inaugurated this week. We look forward to seeing what people can write or draw on it.
May 11, 2023 Day… The Ecoclubs Conference
After two hours of driving because of traffic jams in the morning at 7 am, we arrived at the Centrale Supélec Campus in Paris Saclay with a breakfast for all. After the breakfast, the EcoClubs Day was opened with encouraging speeches !
We first started the tour of the buildings « Bouygues » and « Eiffel » by the “Fab”rication rooms where a student showed us how to make a plastic plate with an engraving “EcoClub” using a laser-cutting machine. We were able to observe how students worked with all these machines and made amazing and efficient things. Some of their manufactured products have participated in competitions. Then, we attended two activities, first an escape game. We had to find the next eco-terrorist with the location of the attack so we could stop him. It was a bit complicated but we got away with it. And then we took a little class where we learned the Art of speaking in front of an audience with fairly basic debates like cereals before or after milk. Afterwards, the volunteers had a text with other subjects of debate and it was our turn to practice in front of a small audience.
Time for a meal !
After eating it was time to present our projects. We were three classes from Uruguay France to present projects. There were also junior high school students. It was an experience for all ages. The presentations lasted from the beginning of the afternoon until 4pm or 5pm. They were very interesting : there was the idea of solar panel installed on backpacks, home-made beauty products and a box that recycles cigarette butts… and many more.
And then it was time to go home after a very busy long day. We arrived at the high school at 6pm having learned a lot.
I am sure that there is still a lot of possible ideas. So why not start them as we did this year !