Mobile Shipping Container Classroom Teaches Children About Ocean Conservation
Shipping containers are used in a variety of ways according to their strengths. In many cases, it comes down to the fact that they are a portable space, and this means that they can be repurposed into classrooms. They are secure as well, meaning that while moving the classroom around, organisations using them can keep expensive equipment such as TVs and computers inside to present those they teach with multimedia courses or tuition.
New Zealand charity Sustainable Coastlines uses this concept to show NZ schoolchildren, and the wider public, the impact that humanity is having on the oceans, and how this impacts us. For better or worse, humanity is part of the Earth’s ecosystem, and as can be seen in the pressing issue of Global Warming, like it or not our impact has consequences.
Sea Walls project
In March this year Sustainable Coastlines worked with international oceans foundation Pangeaseed to paint a number of walls in Napier, on the North Island of New Zealand, with images designed to make people think about their connection with the oceans. A video of the project can be seen above.
Speaking to the camera, a Napier councillor said that she had been approached by a member of the public who had seen the artwork and asked her what the council planned to do? Her response was that it wasn’t for the council to come up with ideas but for the public to get together to tell the council what they wanted doing.
The images on private companies, residential and public sector owned buildings’ walls are powerful and designed to make the person looking at them stop for a moment and think about their own role in the life of the ocean. What happened to that water bottle they dumped unthinkingly on the black beach of Napier? Could that harm a sea creature? How long will it float around the world for?
In making people think as they wander the streets of the town, it is hoped that there will be a community response to the pressing issues of humanity’s impact on the seas that give us life and food.
Shipping container classroom
Another aspect to the community arts festival was the education side. The New Zealand charity Sustainable Coastlines brought their portable shipping container classroom to the event and showed children and their parents the impact of humanity on the oceans. Ultimately, this world does not belong to us, but instead to our children and their children. By bringing education of that kind to them it is hoped that another generation of people will be concerned enough to start reversing the pollution and damage that our parents and grandparents wrought on the planet before us.
Sustainable Coastlines attends a number of events around New Zealand, showing these issues to hundreds of kids a year. The shipping container is extremely portable and no matter how remote the community, the lessons can be brought to them.
The final part of the Napier event was to encourage the community to do a beach clean. Many of the Southern Hemisphere’s major oceanic currents pass New Zealand so even if the people of the country don’t dump waste on the beaches themselves, much of it is imported from around the world by the sea itself. It is estimated that there are around 5 trillion pieces of manmade plastic floating in the world’s oceans and this will wash up on beaches almost everywhere. There are quite disturbing films of Albatross feeding their chicks pieces of plastic, unaware that this has no nutritional value and that they are clogging their chick’s guts up with something that will starve them.
In encouraging people to clean the beaches, this goes some way to tackling the problem of rubbish in the oceans. This was an important part of the Napier Sea Walls event, and with the murals on the walls this may well keep the issue in local residents’ minds and encourage them to come time and again to put garbage out of reach of innocent sea creatures who may unwittingly come a cropper from something that someone mindlessly chucked over their shoulder one day.
Gateway Container Sales
Shipping container classrooms are one of hundreds of ways that shipping containers can be repurposed. Here at Gateway Container Sales we can supply you with the containers you need for any number of reasons. Get in touch today and let us know how we can help!