Renfroe Students Taking Action, Selling Tickets to Outdoor Aqua Vita Benefit Concert

Cheryl sends in this announcement…

Earlier this month, Renfroe sixth grade students participated in Aqua Vita, an interdisciplinary unit designed to teach students about the global water crisis.  Students participated in an empathy walk to the Oakhurst Community Garden, a viewing of the documentaries Water for Life and Carbon for Water, and a design challenge on the back field where they had to construct a water transport system.

As an action step this year, the students are co-sponsoring—with the Decatur Education Foundation—an outdoor benefit concert to purchase LifeStraws® for children in developing countries. LifeStraws® are small, individual water filters that allow a person to drink clean water for a year. Each concert ticket purchased will pay for the purchase of a LifeStraw®, and all money raised will be donated in honor of our beloved teacher and friend, Stacey Daniel.

Sixth grade students will be selling tickets in the community, but tickets are also available at Renfroe Middle School’s front office or at the gate on the day of the event. Concert details are as follows:

Event: Aqua Vita Benefit Concert
Hosting: Renfroe Sixth Grade and Decatur Education Foundation
Date: Thursday, November 15
Time: 5:30 to 8:00 PM
Location: Renfroe Back Field
Ticket Price: $6.50
Headlining: Starboarders
Opening Act: Apples in Stereo’s Robert Schneider (acoustic set)
What: All CSD students and community members welcome—bring a blanket and have a picnic! Music is appropriate for all ages, and all proceeds will go to purchase LifeStraws® through the Rotary International.
Questions: Contact RMS IB Coordinator, Cheryl Nahmias, at [email protected]

Empathy Walk photo courtesy of CSD

Renfroe 6th Graders’ Hands On Experience with the Global Water Crisis

A great story and wonderful photos courtesy of Cheryl Nahmias, CSD’s International Baccalaureate Coordinator…

On September 8 and 9, Renfroe sixth graders participated in our fourth annual Aqua Vita (“water for life”) interdisciplinary unit in which they studied the global water crisis in countries like Ethiopia, Peru, United States, Australia, Germany and Haiti. The unit included an empathy walk to Oakhurst Community Garden where students carried gallons of water in solidarity with world citizens–especially women and children–who walk to gather their water daily. The culminating event for the two-day unit was a design and engineering challenge where country teams collaborated to build water transport systems that could move five gallons of water (enough to keep a citizen of their country minimally hydrated and clean for a day) over and expanse of twenty-five feet. Depending on their country’s wealth and geography, students had to contend with variable resources and terrain to meet the challenge. Their human ingenuity and collaboration skills were put to the test, and all teams rose to the challenge with enthusiasm and left with a heightened awareness and understanding of one of the greatest crises facing global citizens in the 21st Century.

Also, don’t miss this excellent – and cleverly written! – report from the scene by students Mai Allison and Cassidy Attick.  More photos after the jump!

The last part of Aqua Vita, the design segment, was a very challenging one, but also one with many benefits and fun parts to it.

In the beginning, each country was given a budget; and two shoppers from each country went to retrieve the necessary items from the store. I observed the shoppers from afar, and I’m glad I did. It was a hectic experience where the rules were first come, first served. “Shopping was stressful,” said Aireana, a shopper from gold team’s Ethiopia.

As soon as the shoppers got back, the teams started to build. Their goal was to build a structure that could transport five gallons of water twenty-five feet so a citizen of their country could live for one day. Mountains and other terrain was used to some countries’ advantage. Some countries had terrain that was flat, so they couldn’t build off of another surface. To better support the structures, most students covered their chairs in an endless amount of duct tape.

Haiti, with the least amount of money and very tall mountains had high enthusiasm about the success of their structures. Molly said, “Haiti may have the least amount of money, but our enthusiasm level is high.” It seemed that enthusiasm was one of the most helpful things a team had.

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