The Oxbow School is a semester boarding arts school in Napa, CA. It emphasizes advanced studio art study and interdisciplinary humanities. In fall 2018, ClimateSpeak partnered with Oxbow to design and pilot an environmental science curriculum for high school students. Curriculum goals were to engage the students with the climate change while also fostering hope and empowerment about it. Key features of the curriculum were the focus on climate adaptation and mitigation and the focus on opportunities for students to make sense of climate change. We used scientific knowledge as a jumping off point for discussions, narrative writing and activities. All of these activities prepared students for their final project, which was a digital storytelling project. Students produced digital stories about climate change from their perspective.
A selection of these films have been screened in public schools, where they sparked conversations about climate action with over 400 students. The films can be viewed at our YouTube channel, ClimateSpeak.
This curriculum has been shown to foster positive emotions in the face of climate change, such as hope, empowerment and determination (Neas, forthcoming). It is still being used at Oxbow. If you are interested in using this curriculum, please contact us!