Sustainability Design Challenge
Posted 05/02/2018 08:00AM

On April 13, Lovett 7th graders kicked off a six-day sustainability design challenge: an immersive, interdisciplinary, collaborative experience that revolved around the three spheres of sustainability: environmental, economic, and social. After several weeks of developing foundational knowledge in each of the spheres in their core classes and a boot camp on marketing, students were given their charge: work in groups of three or four to design a video marketing campaign and five-minute pitch for that campaign, all focusing on either highlighting Lovett’s current sustainability practices or how Lovett can develop practices that are even more sustainable.

Students were urged to consider Lovett practices around responsible resource use (what we buy and what we do with materials we no longer need); utility use, including water conservation; and Lovett’s food sourcing and carbon footprint. Midway through the week, Chris Tuff ‘99, Director of Content Marketing and Partnerships at 22squared, spent an hour with students, sharing the latest trends and practices in marketing and inspiring them to think big.

The project itself is compelling, but the format of the six days launched students into the real world. They were given daily deadlines and deliverables--and three hours of time each day to work in their design teams. As they began work each day, they evaluated their progress so far and the day’s requirements, and then determined how best to use their time. Seventh grade teachers of English, Global Issues, science, and math were available to help teams that were stuck, escort students across campus as they captured video footage, and redirect when necessary. And then, on day six, students presented in front of a panel of teachers and a room full of students; they will be assessed on both individual and team outcomes, across a range of content and skills.

Seventh graders came away with a deeper understanding of the multiple dimensions of sustainability and what that work means at Lovett. They also got a taste of what it means to work on a project that transcends discipline lines and requires intense collaboration on a tight timeline. It was an exhausting week, but one that perfectly captured Lovett’s commitments to sustainability, critical thinking, creativity, communication, and collaboration.  Watch Lovett’s social media for some of the best marketing videos and news of Lovett’s ongoing work in sustainability.

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