Little Flower Pilot I
Little Flower students representing Industry discuss how to present their argument.
The Case of Plastics is finally under way! On May 17 the Little Flower Catholic High School for Girls became the first of our partner schools to begin the pilot. I was privileged to observe these awesome students present their arguments in the first round of debate. Seeing the debate take place in an actual school setting was enlightening and rewarding.
Entering Little Flower was in many ways a throwback to my high-school experiences in Philadelphia. Though I attended public schools, it felt like a walk down memory lane. Little Flower was built around 1939 in a style common to school construction at that time, with many floors, long corridors, many small lockers, and lots of windows in the classrooms. The girls, in maroon uniforms and saddle shoes, were eager and enthusiastic to begin the project.
The debate was held in a Chinese-language classroom, rather than the usual chemistry classroom. The regulators sat in the front of the room with the five interest groups clustered in groups around the rest of the room. After being given a few minutes to organize, the student who was the chair of the session called the meeting to order and the activities began. Groups presented in turn. Each student introduced herself in character before the groups presented their arguments and responded to questions from the regulators and other students.
A group of Regulators ready to get to the bottom of The Case of Plastics.
The students were well prepared, actively engaged, and very thoughtful. A spirit of competitiveness pervaded the room. The students wanted to win, but they were also respectful of their peers. When the debate ended and the regulators told them that no one had won, the students were obviously disappointed at the lack of result, and their competitive spirit seemed to intensify. I can’t wait to see round 2.