The Ocean Cleanup started out as a high school science project of a boy in the Netherlands. He learned about the plastic pollution problem and couldn't stop thinking about it. Later, in college he invented a method (there was not a good method before this) of removing plastic pollution from the ocean. You can find out a lot more on The Ocean Cleanup website.
The reason we are doing this project is because I recently learned of the global plastic pollution problem and felt that I wanted to do my part as a piece of the solution instead of living a life that contributes to the problem.
I felt that the fact that I have almost one thousand growing minds in front of me each week gave me an opportunity to be a model of what we should be doing to counteract this problem. I have explained to my students that there are two things we can do.
One thing we can do is this fundraiser that we are doing as a school where the students are making art work that will be sent to Art to Remember who will print their art work on gift items their parents can purchase.
The second thing we can do is make small changes in the way we do things at home, like using reusable shopping bags and reusable water bottles.
The 5th graders are doing a water color resist of sea turtles for their art work. I will post post pictures when they are finished. They are stunning! The 6th graders are print-making sea creatures and fish. The drawings that they are using for their prints are quite impressive! I can't wait to post pictures of all the finished art work. I am very excited about this project because it is teaching the students to be good to our planet and it will ultimately have a positive impact on our environment!
Here are some videos to explain further about the problem of plastic pollution in our oceans. Another recommended documentary is Plastic Paradise: The Great Pacific Garbage Patch. This documentary can be found on Netflix.