Is there a cost to freebies?

ES Students explore the issue of school spirit and responsible consumerism

A collaborative journalistic investigation by:

Timothy C., Kyle C., Kaitlyn D., Gabriel G., Kellan H., Charlie K., Mina S., Oliver S., Kendall T., Ryder Z.

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Why people like Concordia’s freebies

At Concordia, students occasionally receive free items as part of a special event or to promote school spirit. Examples include Concordia banners at Phoenix Fridays, small flashlights at an all-school assembly, stuffed Blaze toys, bookmarks and pins for Book Week, or t-shirts for MS and HS class trips. Most students we interviewed could name around 2-3 items that they have received in the 2018-2019 school year.

“When I go to a cool place, I like to collect souvenirs. These freebies are like souvenirs of Concordia,” said Caroline J., Grade 4 student.

Teachers might like freebies because they can use them as prizes or gifts to students who do exceptionally good work. Students say they like the items because it reminds them of a special Concordia memory. Many students say they like to show off their school pride by wearing Concordia gear such as sunglasses or t-shirts.

“I collected all the Book Week pins,” said Violet J., Grade 4 student, as she shows her pin collection on her backpack. “I love Baby Mouse so I love these pins!”

Student Stella H. agrees. “The freebies make me feel happy,” she said. She says if she doesn’t care for the item given away to her, she gives it away as a gift.

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Why people don’t like Concordia’s freebies

The main concern that people have against Concordia’s freebies is that it hurts the earth. The air quality is already bad in Shanghai so we know that burning fossil fuels is bad for everyone.

Fossil fuels have to be used to make these freebies. According to Brain Pop, fossil fuels are plants and animals that have died. After millions of years of dirt covering these dead plants and animals, they turn into coal or oil that can be taken out of the earth by humans. Fossil fuels are in limited supply and will eventually run out. Freebie items come from these non-renewable sources.

“I don’t think many people in our community have had the opportunity (or have been pushed) to think through how their choices impact the environment and have long term effects on many factors,” said Mrs. Godbout, the ES STEM coach.

Other reasons that people might not like freebies is because they are given to people who already have a lot of stuff. Some students think that Concordia should spend their money on other things like donating to charity.

“Concordia could give more microloans like to Kiva,” said George L., Grade 4 student. “Concordia can help people to get their basic needs instead of giving freebies to kids who already have a lot.”

Thoughts from our community