During the 2018-19 school year, teams of middle schoolers tackled the problem of plastic pollution in our waterways with the National Geographic GeoChallenge. First-place teams from sixteen regional competitions traveled to the 2019 Geo Championships in Washington, D.C. in May 2019. This blog series introduces you to each of those teams in their own words.* Registration for next year’s #NatGeoChallenge opens later this month at NatGeoEd.org/GeoChallenge.
Meet The Nerd Herd!
The Nerd Herd wrote and illustrated a children’s book to educate young people about the risks associated with single-use plastics and the effects they have on waterways, including contamination of drinking water sources. The team presented the book at a local elementary school and seeks to continue spreading their message.
From: New Cumberland Middle School, Pennsylvania
Team Motto: We encourage YOU to reduce your use of plastics.
A funny thing about your team: Our team is awkward, but we’ve embraced it. We are the Nerd Herd!
A funny thing about your coach: She has a stash of candies in her desk drawer at all times in case of emergencies.
Favorite moment at regional competition: The excitement and jubilation and relief that we felt when we successfully shared our presentation with the judges.
List one way you’ve changed your single-use plastic use: We all got reusable bamboo cups and use them at restaurants. We use reusable water bottles everyday. Teagan stopped using plastic utensils. We all use tote bags and skip plastic bags. We started using reusable containers to store food. We choose no straws at all, and choose to purchase items with minimal or no plastic packaging.
Registration for the 2019-2020 National Geographic GeoChallenge opens later this month.
*Team responses have been lightly edited for grammar.