The starting point of GIOCONDA is a reflection around what girls and boys know and want, in the context of the area where they live and go to school; this type of information is used to give meaning to the measured data. For this reason, in the first GIOCONDA meeting in schools, each class brainstorms for ideas, in order to create a “conceptual map” around the concept of “risk.”
“Conceptual maps” involve a four-stage process. In the first, educators asked each student to write on Post-Its words associated to “risk”; in the second, where that risk should go on the map; in the third, identifying the causes; in the fourth, the solutions. IFC-CNR researchers and local educators used free CMAP software to process these maps.
he fundamental point of GIOCONDA is that it begins with what girls and boys know and want, in the context of the area where they live and go to school; this type of information is used to give meaning to the measured data.
From the point of view of content, the results return a great wealth of information. We found that the tendency of the adolescents who attended was to relate the meaning of risk to themselves, to living in environments that brought them emotional stress (school, family, roads) and they verbalized it with the words “fear”, “danger”, “emotion”, “adrenaline”. The other areas connected to risk were also natural disasters, gambling and health. One word often linked to risk was “death”. Health is frequently mentioned within the major factors linked to “risk”.
Rarely, and only by the students attending high schools, there was an explicit link made between environment and health problems.
The connection was frequently made explicit in the area of Taranto, where the actual situation of high pollution, as well as the historical one known via media, was reflected macroscopically in the eyes of the students.
Speaking of health, the most frequent and qualitatively interesting reference was that of “contamination”, with disease outcomes that were hardly connected to the effects of pollution.