Teaching Climate Change for Resilience and Hope
When I started teaching high school science, I was full of enthusiasm! I thought I knew best how my students and I could tackle the politicization of climate change — but when I asked students how our learning was going, they were the opposite of enthusiastic.
In fact, they told me, and here I quote, that “every activity [in our ecology and climate unit was] more depressing than the last.”
How, I wondered, could I learn to change that? How could we build a classroom environment focused on climate resilience, while still acknowledging the big feelings that climate anxiety can (rightfully) cause?
Turns out my students were the ones who helped me figure it out!
This video describes the pedagogical content knowledge my students and I have generated together over a decade in AP Biology and Earth & space science, leveraging vital aspects of rigorous, resilience-focused STEM teaching like
- practicing authentic scientific skills through active, student-centered learning
- experimenting with models and simulations
- grounding learning in place-based experiences
- giving back through service learning
- uncovering solutions through problem-based guided inquiry
I'm so grateful to my students for everything we've learned together, as well as for their delightful help in creating this snapshot of our work. :)