As a one-off maths lesson, students in Years 8 to 11 looked at the climate impact of fast fashion, particularly Christmas jumpers. According to the Huffington Post, it was estimated that in 2016 a quarter of the UK population were likely to buy a new Christmas jumper. The students worked out making these would use more than 500,000 bathtubs - or 90 Olympic sized swimming pools – of water and enough carbon dioxide to fill 179 balloons for every person in the UK.
The Advanced Mathematics Support Programme ran a competition to design a poster to visualise environmental impact. We submitted a number of outstanding entries, particularly from students in Years 8 and 9, and Gracie French in Year 8 has been selected as a top five finalist. We are waiting to hear if she has scooped first prize: a £25 voucher and the poster’s publication on the Royal Statistical Society’s blog.
Gracie is very clear about the motivation behind her poster: ‘I decided to choose the topic of plastic for my project because it has such a huge impact on the environment. Plastic contributes to greenhouse gases at every stage of its life cycle, from its production to its disposal. My poster focuses specifically on the impact of the disposal of plastic on marine life and our oceans. My main source of research was the internet and the news. In fact, only recently there was an article in the news which stated that a sperm whale had been found dead on a Scottish beach with a 100kg ball of litter in its stomach. The litter included plastic bags and cups.’
Miss Louise McDowall, Teacher of Maths