Climate Change Is Coming To Public Schools And I’m Ecstatic

By  | 

climate changeNew nationwide standards are incorporating climate change into the public school science curricula, to which I say, fantastic, and it’s about damn time!  I see wonderful potential in this change, primarily in that our kids will be equipped to address these problems when they grow up and become leaders.

Though these are just guidelines, not requirements, it looks like 40 states say they’re going to follow them. Jennifer Ludden of writes:

Mark McCaffrey of the National Center for Science Education says the lessons will fill a big gap. “Only 1 in 5 [students] feel like they’ve got a good handle on climate change from what they’ve learned in school,” he says, adding that surveys show two-thirds of students say they’re not learning much at all about it. “So the state of climate change education in the U.S. is abysmal.”

I second that. Although it’s been 20 some years since I started my wonderful public school education, I don’t remember learning a thing about climate change. Not even in high school, and not even in college (unless you count listening to my roommate’s drunken ramblings about global warming).

But this topic always tends to stirs up controversy, much of it political.

Frankly, I don’t understand it, but some people still think the human impact on climate change is a huge government hoax and we shouldn’t worry about it. However, teachers will be allowed to present both sides of the issue if they so desire. But then the problem, of course, is that not only does this confuse children, but it may cause turbulence when parents’ beliefs conflict with what the teachers say.

Another problem, one that’s more viable in my opinion, is the upsetting nature of climate change itself. I’m a grown ass woman and the thought of dying baby polar bears sends me into hysterics. And then, the thought of my own sweet daughter learning about these horrible, difficult realities freaks me out. I already try to keep my daughter’s consumption of the news at a minimum. She’s only a toddler, but I just can’t imagine it being healthy for her to see images of car crashes and war and controversy all the time.

However, I have promised myself that I won’t try to filter out the entire world for my child. I think it’s best to approach it the same way we’re advised to talk about sex: ask questions, listen, and keep it age-appropriate.

If I let my daughter talk out how she feels about climate change and I truly listen to her concerns, we could make changes in our own lives to help the environment. I wouldn’t be surprised if by the time she’s in grade school, her knowledge of climate change surpasses mine.

(photo: Barnaby Chambers / Shutterstock)


  1. Lastango

    March 27, 2013 at 3:39 pm

    “However, teachers will be allowed to present both sides of the issue if they so desire. But then the problem, of course, is that not only does this confuse children, but it may cause turbulence when parents’ beliefs conflict with what the teachers say.”


    At least you’re honest. For a global warmist, there’s nothing worse than both sides of the issue getting an airing.

    • Blueathena623

      March 27, 2013 at 4:29 pm

      Says you. I enjoy reading scientific articles that discuss all aspects of climate change. However, you fail, because instead of linking to one of the many scientific article that discuss this, you linked to a conspiracy-theory esque website.

    • Lastango

      March 27, 2013 at 5:23 pm

      Sorry – you fail… to notice that I’m commenting on the exclusion of dissenting voices, not on the scientific aspects of climate change.

      Nice misdirection, though.

      Oh, one other thing: the article is a reprint from the Wall Street Journal. Only a climate alarmist would define that as a “conspiracy-theory esque website”. But of course you knew that.

  2. Blueathena623

    March 27, 2013 at 4:22 pm

    Sadly, I’ll be surprised if it happens. These aren’t part of common core, and its been enough of a struggle getting states to adopt common core. If you notice in the development/implementation section, I don’t think it lists any states that have adopted these yet, and it is up to the states to adopt them. 2nd, for the information to make it into the majority of textbooks (which yes, teaches can use materials outside of text books, I know) Texas will have to jump on board. Texas buys the most textbooks and therefore the textbook industry caters to Texas. Finally, the information will have to be included on national assessments for the majority of teachers to teach it since teachers, sadly, have to teach to the test nowadays. I’m not saying that as a slam against teachers, but as a slam to the educational decisions of this country.

    • Justme

      March 28, 2013 at 10:33 am

      I teach in Texas (but in a large metropolitan area with a diverse population) and quite frankly….our textbooks are hardly ever used because they are outdated and boring. Our district is transitioning our campuses over to Apple products and most of the students learning will be through apps and resources on the internet.

      For example – I have NEVER met a Science teacher who didn’t teach evolution and the Big Bang Theory. Honestly. We’re not ALL backwards.

    • Wendy

      March 28, 2013 at 11:52 pm

      Science standards are finished? Where are you looking? Only Math and ELA are done.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *