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To young people, the changing climate is an ongoing source of anxiety. They are bombarded with devastating news and statistics almost daily, and are swamped with images of their future being dragged away by the adults in charge. And they feel powerless. They cannot vote, they don’t know how to influence policies that will impact their lives and that will leave the mess they’re going to have to fix.
The In Class With… Climate Special aims to show students how and why they can get involved in the conversations around climate change. It’s not about striking, but using their science understanding to form opinions and be part of discussions around climate change, and thinking about the role they can play in the democratic processes that affect them.
In August 2018, Greta Thunberg started a school strike for the climate outside the Swedish Parliament that has since spread all over the world and now involves over 100,000 schoolchildren. Watching on from Australia was Year 8 student, Harriet O’Shea Carre. She went on to bring the Student Strike for Climate movement to Australia and gave young Australians a voice.
Two of Australia’s heavy weight influencers responsible for spearheading action on Climate Change, Doha Khan and Harriet O’Shea Carre, tell just what it took to become an effective force in this pivotal political landscape in this In Class With… Climate Special.
In Class With… Climate Special
Video Length: 29:44
In association with WOMADelaide, and Adelaide Botanic High School.
How to be heard
In March 2019 Australian students defied calls to stay in school and went on strike for climate change action. This was the first youth-led climate strike but it didn’t just involve everyone putting their pens down and deciding not to go to school one day. Months of preparation and planning were behind the event and Junkee Media documented this as part of the Youth On Strike! series, released on the first anniversary of the strikes.
Youth On Strike! – Episode 1
Being heard isn’t just about standing up and walking out. There is a complicated planning process in advance, as well as other ways, beyond striking, to get people to listen to the youth. Hear the story of 12 students who vlogged their journey to the SS4C strikes.
Watch the rest of the series here.
What can teachers and schools do?
Teachers asked their questions to the panel at the In Class With… Climate Special to get advice from the students about how best to support them.
How can teachers support our students to get their voices heard?
Are there any resources that teachers can use to discuss climate concerns in the classroom?
The youth of today will be most affected by climate change. It’s time they were part of the discussion.
Teacher Resource and STEM Pack 10: Climate Change
The related teacher resource contains a range of student questions. Access it now to you develop student activities.
Creating a unit or keen to extend student learning connected with Climate Change? Our Climate Change STEM Pack contains a range of activities and tasks covering reasoning skills, understanding facts and career awareness. There are also guidelines on establishing a community of inquiry task.