On Sept. 21, Milo V., Emery S. and Hazel K. stepped onto a stage in Washington D.C. to represent Mackintosh Littleton as they accepted the U.S. Dept. Of Education’s Green Ribbon School award. Accompanied by Head of School Diane Dunne and Sustainability Coordinator Alison Weems, these students helped honor Mack Littleton’s deep commitment to the environmental and sustainability initiatives that our entire community participates in.
At Mack Littleton, sustainability work is student-led and student-driven. With support from our faculty and parent community, students are able to create solutions to real-world problems such as how to minimize landfill waste from lunch products, create art out of recycled objects and grow organic greenhouse crops.
As Mack student representatives, Milo, Hazel and Emery met Colorado Senator Michael Bennet, toured American University’s sustainable campus, and attended other events for the Green Ribbon honorees. They returned with new ideas and observations that they shared with the entire school at an assembly, recognizing that this award is truly for our entire community to share. Here are some of their reflections:
Emery: Senator Michael Bennet had many interesting insights about the environment. When we first met him, it was clear he was very enthusiastic about the environment and students getting involved. He talked to us about being founders. In his words, “The founders of this country, strong men, still had slaves and it took a group of strong people to end slavery. Now it is going to take people not unlike yourselves, to stand up and fight for the environment.”
Milo: American University is special because it is very eco-friendly and is working to reduce its carbon footprint. My favorite thing we saw at AU was that they use permeable pavers for their sidewalks. Permeable pavers are tiles with cracks in between them where water can seep through onto layers of rock underground instead of running into the sewers. This way the water can go back up into the soil and help their plants.
The last thing we did was go to the award ceremony. We got to go onstage and I got to hold the green plaque while they took our picture. The ceremony, and the whole trip, was an amazing experience.
Hazel: On our trip to D.C., we made the discovery that there are millions more ways to became an even better Green School. Some new ideas came from the American University tour. When we took the tour, they talked about their sustainability practices, one of which was Green Roofs. Green Roofs are roofs with plants on them. Different roofs can hold different types of plants, depending on the weight the roof can hold. You would also use different plants based on where you lived due to thing like rain, snow, and temperature. This is one of the ideas we got from American University.