EARTH DAY: Ideas for the classroom
Selected TeachableMoment lessons on Earth Day & the environment


Earth Day 2011: OUR WATER FOOTPRINT (Elementary) (4/15/11) Students consider how much water we consume and what impact it has by hearing some facts and discussing the story of one girl's water consumption.

THE GARBAGE PATCH: Two Earth Day Lessons (Elementary) With the help of a short video clip, students explore the 'life cycle' of a plastic bag and develop a 'reduce, reuse, recycle' action plan.

MESSAGE IN THE WAVES: Two Earth Day Lessons (Middle School) After viewing a short video clip, students consider the effect all our waste has on the environment and develop a 'reduce, reuse, recycle' action plan.

Earth Day 2011: ELECTRONICS & ENVIRONMENTAL (IN)JUSTICE (High School) (4/21/11) Students consider concepts of "environmental racism" and "environmental (in)justice" and view and discuss an online clip about the dumping of electronics. Homework assignments suggest furher study of this issue and the Gulf Spill anniversary.

EARTH DAY 2008: An Essay on HISTORY & THE ENVIRONMENT (High School) An Earth Day presentation to students prompts educator Alan Singer to reflect on some vital questions that Al Gore's documentary An Inconvenient Truth left out


THE PRICE AT THE PUMP: What Does Oil Really Cost? (5/5/11) Two student readings focus on the reasons for rising gas prices as well as the true social and environmental costs of oil, with discussion questions and an internet inquiry.

GLOBAL CLIMATE CHANGE: Fitting the Facts Together & Acting on Them (9/22/10) Student readings explore the scientific evidence on global warming, the views of climate change deniers, and ideas for student action on climate change, including a day of action on October 10, 2010, sponsored by, Greenpeace and the Rainforest Action Network.

CLIMATE CHANGE CONTROVERSY (3/24/10) Alan Shapiro offers a process (including two student readings) to help students conduct a rigorous inquiry into the controversy over climate change.

COPENHAGEN CLIMATE CONFERENCE: Will we continue to be 'slowly boiling brainless frogs'? (10/19/09, updated 12/21/09) The December 2009 conference presents an opportunity for students to consider some key issues facing our planet.

GREEN INITIATIVES to Combat Climate Change (4/15/09) Student readings describe the scientific controversy over "tipping points," the Obama-Biden energy program, and plans to green the Empire State Building. Following the readings are suggestions for student-led green initiatives for Earth Day - or any other day.

YOUTH ACTION ON CLIMATE CHANGE includes additional action opportunities and also lists useful websites. A relatively new one is the Alliance for Climate Protection, an organization founded last year by Al Gore:


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