Country School Eighth Graders Tackle World Issues

Country School eighth graders presented at the school’s annual World Congress, a hallmark event of their year-long study of world cultures.

“What they are learning is vital preparation for a generation of leaders who will have to bring knowledge, empathy and creative thinking to inescapable global challenges,” said eighth-grade teacher Bart Fredo who teaches the social-studies course. Additional eighth grade teachers include Elizabeth Carroll and Will McDonough
In preparation for the two-day event, held May 22 and 23 in the school’s auditorium, students examined the geography, history and cultures of Africa, the Middle East, East Asia and South Asia. Their course of study culminated in a major research project dealing with contemporary issues, including the environment, climate change, alternative energy, global health and human rights. During the World Congress symposium, students individually took to the podium to present their issue summaries and field questions from the audience of teachers and classmates. 
“They develop several vital skills that they will need as they move into high school, college and beyond,” explained Mr. Fredo. “Critical thinking and research skills, of course, but equally important are peer collaboration, public speaking and the ability to think on one’s feet.”
Topics and presenters included:

Air Pollution - Thatcher Findlay, Maeve Baker
Water Pollution - Charlotte Calderwood, Ryland Strine
Plastics - Henry Scott, Cassie Warren
Biodiversity, Interconnectedness, and Habitat Loss - Mark Taubner, Abby O'Brien of Stamford, Annika Mannix
Deforestation and Erosion - Sasha Intile, Hunter McCarthy
Climate Change - Jamie Staniar, Riya Punjabi, Paul Schilcher
Human Trafficking - Caleb Seiden, Beau Johnson
Child Labor - Cece Salvatore, Payton Koch
Access to Education - Mac Ryan
Gender Discrimination - TJ Moody, Daisy Fichthorn
Overpopulation - Amelia Lancaster, Jaeon Anglin
Refugees - Maren Frey, Benjamin Herdeg, Huett Nelson
Hunger - Brian Collins, Hugh Gardiner
Biomass Energy - Brayden Hogue
Geothermal Energy - Dean Ambrose
Hydroelectric Energy - Lilly Krongard, Megan Mitchell
Nuclear Energy - Matt Edwards, Andrew Mayock
Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion - Fiona Burton
Solar Energy - Orchid Coffin Mimi Sue Novak
Tidal Energy - Ashley Rodgers
Wind Energy - Sasha Coughlin
Electric Vehicles - Alanna Gribin Kate Barnard
Bicycles & Human-Powered Vehicles- Luke Sosnow, Tyler Rosolen
Public transportation - Calvin Jacob  ​, Garrett Cannon 
Life Expectancy - Gracie Agulay
Child mortality - Rett Zeigler
Immunization - Ava Gizzie
Influenza - Katie LeBaron
Malaria - Parakram Karnik
Tuberculosis - Alex Sotirhos
Heart Disease - Charlie Gaynor
Diabetes - Sofie Petricone
Obesity - Jasper Engle
Alcoholism - Jackson Alpaugh
Drug Addiction - Christian Jacob
Alzheimer's Disease - Miles English
Autism - Matt Riccardi
Cancer Research - Cole Nightingale
Stem-cell Research - Walker Blair
Access to Health Care - Darla Moody