Lord Michael Hastings
Baron Hastings of Scarisbrick CBE
Dr Maria van Kerkhove
National Geographic Young Explorer
National Geographic Fellow
Dr Macdonald Farnham
Dr Carol O’Donnell
Dr Brian Mandell
About this class
The Global Classroom’s second class took place on World Environment Day (5 June 2020) to bring children’s environmental concerns into focus. As our future world leaders, children all over the world have been inspired by Greta Thunberg’s example to speak up for the type of world they wish to inherit. This session gave our global pupils the chance to discuss environmental issues with some of the world’s leading experts on the subject.
In a session led by Scarisbrick Hall School, pupils were treated to another stellar line-up of speakers, including BMG artist, Jason Mraz; World Health Organisation (WHO) Technical Lead, Dr Maria van Kerkhove; Smithsonian Institute Director, Dr Macdonald Farnham; and leading environmentalists Melati Wisjen and Andrew Brennen. The Smithsonian Institute once again provided their invaluable academic contributions, with support from UNESCO.
Melati Wisjen, co-founder of Bye Bye Plastic Bags, told students that she and her sister Isabel were “a living example that kids can do something” to make a positive impact on the environment. Dr Mac Farnham from the Smithsonian Institute gave an in-depth talk about how “we are all connected; humans, animals and the environment.” A theory that Dr Maria van Kerkhove built on with her explanation of the WHO’s “one health” concept.
BMG artist Jason Mraz is a double Grammy award-winning singer-songwriter perhaps best-known for his hit single “I’m Yours.” What many people don’t know is that he’s also a sustainable farmer and passionate advocate of organic, fair trade agriculture. Jason answered pupils’ questions live from his California ranch and explained how he goes about writing songs that “inspire us to take action and stay motivated to change the world for the better.”
A small group of 45 incredibly lucky students from across the globe also took part in a songwriting masterclass with Jason. His latest single, “Look For The Good”, really captures the essence of this session’s teachings and the positive influence that he, our other inspirational speakers, and The Global Classroom strive to provide the next generation of environmentalists.