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took to complete the hunt or by how many ideas students came up with while relating the places to climate change along the way. It is a good idea to prepare numbered note pads for students to fill in as they go along, and to ensure that as many of the places they select are out of sight of the ones that follow (or come before) so that students have less chance of following others from place to place rather than solve the clues for themselves. Teachers with more time might want to enrich the learning experience via the following options:

1. Write a fact after each clue that connects the location to its larger global role in climate change. These facts could be statistics about the contribution of each specific gas or item (transport/buildings/meat production/deforestation/etc.) to climate change, the estimated energy/cost/gas reduction of the alternative or any other information teachers feel is important to impart. Students would be required to write these down and to share them at the class gathering or assembly after completing the treasure hunt.

2. Add a question about climate change connected to the location after each clue. Students find the answer at the next location after they have solved the clue. Again, students would be required to write these down to share later.

It was great fun both preparing for this treasure hunt and

energy than air conditioners and one can select the speed and the number of fans needing to be used.

• LPG canister: (–) Forests may have to be cut down to extract gas made from fossil fuels which are GHGs. More carbon is created during transportation to the school. (+) Canisters can be constantly refilled without waste. LPG creates less CO2

than oil (19% less), coal (30% less) and 50% less than coal-generated electricity.

• Vermiculture bin: (+) Food waste is not put into landfill which produces methane (CH4

on vegetables instead of chemical fertilizers which use produce large amounts of nitrous oxide (NO2


). Can be used as compost ).

• Disused incinerator: (–) Particulates from burning cause respiratory disease and create CO2

• Recycle bins: (+) Recycling saves huge amounts of energy because fewer new products have to be manufac- tured and less CO2

is produced when garbage is land- filled or incinerated.

• School vehicle: (–) Uses petrol, an oil-based fossil fuel that produces CO2

. (+) Use small, energy efficient

vehicle, turn off engine when waiting, arrange schedule so many students are carried at the same time, maintain parts and brakes so runs efficiently, purchase a hybrid school vehicle so less petrol is consumed.


Much can be learned from this Climate Change Treasure Hunt in an enjoyable and creative way. (It was enjoyed immensely by most students in all grades at our school.) Teachers can decide a time limit for trying to complete the course depending on the school schedule. They can also decide if they want to award prizes according to the time it


watching all of the excited students running (or slinking) around trying to find the clues. Be prepared to have students approach you with bewildered looks saying “Are you sure…?” or to beg you to give them hints. The excitement during our PowerPoint confirmation of the locations at the end was tremendous. In the months that follow your treasure hunt, you too will surely notice a change in some of the students’ attentiveness to turning off lights, recycling and paper use.

Chris Summerville is a global and environmental educator who has spent most of the last twenty-five years learning how to teach and live his concerns in the enigmatic country of Japan. He currently teaches English at Ritsumeikan University in Kyoto. Learn more about his work at www.

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