Teach Climate

December 5, 2019
By: Education

Climate Lessons Update – December 2019

Letter to Climate Change Educators

The 25th annual international UN climate negotiations, also known as COP25, has started this week and will continue through December 13! Over 25,000 people from 200 countries are gathering in Madrid, Spain to participate as world leaders work to increase their commitments for climate action under the Paris Agreement.

Article 6 of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) seeks to reduce the impact of climate change by enabling society to be a part of the solution — recognizing that education is an integral part of long-lasting and sustainable action. Education and training are crucial in enabling citizens to contribute to local and global efforts to meet the climate change challenge.

Climate change education is at the heart of our work, and we know that if our nation and the international community are to succeed in effectively addressing climate change, we need a public that is climate-literate.

In the spirit of Article 6, as well as Article 12 of the Paris Agreement — climate change education, training, public awareness, public participation and public access to information — we devote two weeks every year to follow the United Nations climate change negotiations and share with our subscribers. Our COP25 coverage includes summaries, blogs, and webinars from individuals attending under our accreditation. Sign up here to follow along and use our COP Educator Toolkit to support learning in the classroom!

Thank you for all you have done to teach climate in 2019! We look forward to connecting in the new year.

Megan Van Loh, Education Coordinator
Climate Generation: A Will Steger Legacy

Climate Generation Happenings

Connect to COP25 from your classroom!

We invite you to join in with your classroom to get an inside look at COP25 in Madrid, Spain! Join our virtual webinar to hear from our Youth and Policy Manager, Sarah Goodspeed, who is attending the international climate change negotiations, and a chance for your students join in the discussion about this global event!
Date: Thursday, December 12
Time: 11:20 a.m. CST


We will be talking about how climate change impacts immigration and invite you to read these articles: Central America and Marshall Islands. We will also incorporate topics in the book, Exodus by Julie Bertagna, so feel free to read a combination!


Minnesota Educators

KidWind Renewable Energy Workshop for Educators

Saturday, December 7, 9:00 a.m.–1:00 p.m., Macalester College
Interested in bringing renewable energy into your classroom? Join KidWind Project to explore ways to bring the power of wind and solar into your classroom. This workshop is intended to help you prepare to participate in the Minnesota Renewable Energy Challenge to be held in the late Spring of 2020. Register here.




Climate Interactive and the MIT Sloan Sustainability Initiative have released En-ROADS—a free, online model that explores actions to address climate change. This tool can be used in conjunction with our COP Educator Toolkit to gain a deeper understanding of international climate change negotiations. Test the global impacts of efforts to scale up energy efficiency, enact carbon pricing, reduce deforestation, and much more. Sign up for a launch webinar here.

Cranky Uncle

John Cook, founder of skepticalscience.com and keynote speaker at our Institute last summer, is developing a smartphone game that teaches critical thinking about climate change and builds resilience against misinformation. It’s called the Cranky Uncle and is well suited for classrooms. Sign up here to be immediately notified when they launch!


One of our partners, the University of Colorado Boulder, is working with MOSAiC, Multidisciplinary Drifting Observatory for the Study of Arctic Climate. They are on an international expedition to study the Arctic climate system. Read their blog posts and catch the recent news from their expedition!

15 Educator Grants

Check out these grants for educators for classroom enrichment, professional development, and STEM.


What We’re Reading

We are reading Exodus by Julie Bertagna for the month of December. This dystopian, young adult novel is set in 2100. Themes of a changing climate, immigration, and refugees are recurring throughout this fictional story, and we are excited to integrate it into what we’ll be learning at the COP25 international climate negotiations this month.


Stories from the Field

This Friday, December 6th, youth will lead an intergenerational climate strike, with actions across the U.S. We invite you to engage your students with the strike from your classroom — in fact, we have a Climate Strike Educator Toolkit for just that! (If possible, join a strike in your area!)


Moment of Inspiration

You can watch the livestream of COP25 to see first-hand what is happening at the international negotiations throughout the two weeks of December 2-13!