Elevating Student Voice: Environmental Justice and Redford Center Stories

November 02, 2020
By Educator Innovator

Only top three issues included; not to scale and will not add up to 100%; Source: CIRCLE/Tisch College 2020 Pre-Election Youth Poll

While election season tends to concentrate public attention on choosing leaders, young people are often more motivated by longer term issues that affect their future. And, according to the CIRCLE/Tisch College.Tufts 2020 Pre-Election Youth Poll, for many young people, a top concern is climate change and the environment, along with racism and healthcare. And young people’s interests in climate are diverse, including global warming but also concern for species, sustainable agriculture, clean air, water and oceans, and environmental justice.

Providing a framework for supporting young people in investigating and communicating about interests so diverse can be a challenge, but newly expanded resources from the Redford Center’s Redford Stories Project can support young people in following their interests in environmental action through writing and media-making in both classroom and online settings.

What is The Redford Stories Project?

The Redford Stories Project is a learning and storytelling initiative providing educators and students with dynamic and integrative tools to actively engage in the movement for environmental justice, protection and repair, and develop their capacity to have vibrant impact as storytellers elevating their visions and voices for a more just, hopeful, healthy world. This initiative supports educators in bringing an environmental context and content to any class, and brings educators and students into dialogue with youth activists, filmmakers, and environmental and social justice leaders to create a learning community at the nexus of joy for learning, transformational storytelling and global justice.

This year, the Stories Project invites young people ages 10-14 to participate by creating 90-second Apple Clips films about an aspect of environmental justice that is particularly meaningful to them, for showcase in April 2021.

In support of teachers and learners, the center has created the 2020-21 Stories Project curriculum which features 10-lessons + 5 bonus lessons. Lessons include writing prompts, narrative exercises and digital storytelling; critical/creative thinking; how-to aspects of advocacy; English/science/history connections; films and media (including original Redford Center content); conversation ideas; activities; and extensions. Each lesson can be taught in 20-30 minutes, or extended to 45-80 minutes or multiple days.

How do I Get Involved?

Source: Redford Center Stories

Whether you are a teacher working in-person or online, an educator working with a youth-centered organization or after-school program, or a homeschool teacher or parent, The Redford Stories Project is designed to provide flexible and thought-provoking learning experiences and projects to engage your students. Interested in connecting? Go here to sign up now…