Launch A New Vision for Teaching Children About Climate
Organized by: John Pitkin
I’m a climate activist. I live and work in Cambridge. Last year I developed a concept for a new image to stimulate and sustain awareness of the climate situation. I engaged illustrator Dr. Joyce Wang, who also lives in Cambridge, to develop an illustration based on this concept. A copy of her vivid illustration, titled “The Struggle,” will soon be on display at the Cambridge Citywide Senior Center, and It can also be seen at www.seeingthestruggle.org.
Previous attempts to communicate the full picture of climate change have relied on numbers, charts and verbal narratives. These are hard to grasp and harder still to hold in our heads. The new illustration depicts climate and climate change as a unified narrative with many strands. Inspired in part by scientist Wallace Broecker’s description of the climate as a “beast,” it portrays climate as single system and force that is shaping and changing the environment as well as the conditions for life on earth.
Now an area educator has proposed that The Struggle can be used as a tool in school classrooms. I’ve discussed this idea with several experienced teachers in different school systems, and they agreed that the The Struggle could be used effectively as a teaching tool. None had seen anything like it before.
In order to demonstrate this innovation I would like to offer classroom kits for teachers in one Cambridge primary school to use on a trial basis this spring. If the trial proves successful in classrooms this spring, the aim is to provide the image for many more classrooms in the fall.
The estimated cost of copying and materials for this pilot project is $400. I am asking climate activists and friends to help cover the cost of this promising project. $20 covers the cost of one classroom kit. Please pitch in to help kids to see The Struggle!