Paper No. 9
Presentation Time: 10:35 AM
CLIMATE EDUCATION IN THE MID-ATLANTIC: DEVELOPING SHARED APPROACHES IN AND OUT OF THE CLASSROOM
Both the impacts of climate change and the choices available to adapt and mitigate climate change largely function at the regional scale. Additionally, understanding and addressing climate change will require a concerted campaign involving a diverse array of educations from small to large organizations. Focusing on a specific region and connecting to rigorous global climate science research and innovative responses will help establish a cohesive network, increasing the effectiveness of a climate change education initiative. Build on this, we have developed a climate education partnership, Maryland Delaware Climate Change Education, Assessment and Research (MADE CLEAR), to better understand effective ways to support formal-, informal- and higher-education practitioners in climate change education in this Mid-Atlantic region. In 2012-2013 we initiated professional development for each education practitioner group to improve their capacity to incorporate rigorous regionally-based climate science and solutions into their education strategies. We are promoting communities-of-practice within and across these groups as they share their successes and challenges and consider common messages and approaches. Our training and resources focus on impacts and solutions most relevant to our region including sea level rise, extreme events, and urban heat impacts. Our professional development approach aligns directly with existing education and natural resource, including the region’s environmental literacy initiatives, the Next Generation Science Standards, and state climate adaptation and mitigation plans. We anticipate that by building off of existing policy, we will build the success of the network into the future. Our project includes design-based research of all three education groups, and thus we will identify effective climate change education strategies, in and out of schools, that are applicable in other regions.