Climate Conversations S1E5: Teaching Kids about Climate Change

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Description

This week the Climate Conversations team are joined by the founder of ClimateCurriculum.com and Science Teacher at Boston Latin School, Timothy Gay, whose goal is to get schools across the country teaching students about climate change.

We discuss the challenges associated with bringing climate change into the science curriculum, and how Timothy’s students have taken up the mantle of climate activism.

Timothy highlights some of the practical and hands on climate research activities that his students engage in, with a focus on climate solutions at a local level, and tells us about the future of his Climate Curriculum project.

Participants

Rajesh Kasturirangan

Laura Howells

Curt Newton

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Comments

Curt Newton's picture

Teachers, journalists,

Teachers, journalists, everyone... 

You may have read Amy Harmon's thought-provoking series in NY Times this summer about high school teachers' challenges and successes in weaving climate change into their classrooms (e.g. this summary article).

On November 7, Amy is co-leading a public panel "conversation about the challenges of teaching, learning about and reporting on climate change" at Ohio University in Athens OH. They're inviting questions in advance through the Facebook event's Discussion tab. 

I hope her ongoing reporting on this issue will be an important contribution to the national conversation about climate education.

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Rick Shankman's picture

Curt, you might like this

Curt, you might like this piece from The Guardian on climate education challenges from Big Oil's infiltration of the classroom...

"Decades of documents reviewed by the Center for Public Integrity reveal a tightly woven network of organizations that works in concert with the oil and gas industry to paint a rosy picture of fossil fuels in America’s classrooms. Led by advertising and public-relations strategists, the groups have long plied the tools of their trade on impressionable children and teachers desperate for resources....

Anthony Leiserowitz, director of the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication, likened industry-sponsored curriculums that ignore climate science to advertising. 'You’re exploiting that trusted relationship between the student and the teacher,' he said. Leiserowitz – whose research has focused on how culture, politics and psychology impact public perception of the environment – said fossil-fuel companies have a stake in perpetuating a message of oil dependency."

See... https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/jun/15/big-oil-classrooms-pipeline-oklahoma-education

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Curt Newton's picture

ACE is absolutely part of the

ACE is absolutely part of the equation, great organization, and I think their programs (assemblies, youth capacity building, extracurricular action) quite complementary to the focused classroom les

son plans and projects that Climate Curriculum has been developing. I don't see a conflict. Having seen ACE and BCAN together at numerous climate events around the Boston area, I'm pretty sure (?) they hang out.

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Curt Newton's picture

As I noted in the podcast,

As I noted in the podcast, the clarity and passion that young people bring to the fight against climate change is a powerful example for us all.

We need more great teachers like Timothy that inspire and support them. I'm so glad to see students and young people at events, legislator meetings, city hearings... 

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Rick Shankman's picture

Ironically, Boston Latin kids

Ironically, Boston Latin kids leave their flowers and flyswatters (and "quiet advocacy huggens") at home and go to the Statehouse for climate action... https://acespace.org/press-releases

/ma-high-schoolers-fight-divestment-state-house

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