Young people play a critical role in protecting the climate. According to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Secretary General Patricia Espinosa, “Young people want to be involved in the process, and we value that interest.”
In Earth Science, our sixth grade students are taking on climate change as part of their Houston 2120 project.
The Houston 2120 project is driven by one question – how can we impact Houstonians to curve climate change?
During this project, students are researching what Houston looked like during the late 1800s compared to now. They will also predict what Houston will be like in 100 years.
Divided into three groups, the students will each have a different focus. They can choose wildlife, vegetation, transportation, agriculture, outdoor spaces (parks), healthcare and housing. Within these categories, the students can choose a more specific focus.
“I am really excited about this project because the students of today will be the stewards of our Earth tomorrow,” said Lorien Foux, Science Teacher. “I am hopeful that this project will be highly relevant to the students as this Earth they are inheriting is the only one they have.”
Making the Real-Life Connection
To add an element of real-life connection, the students had the opportunity to meet and interview Meteorologist Justin Stapleton from KPRC Channel 2 via Zoom. During this time, they discussed how our climate in Houston has changed in the last ten years. They discussed how the influx of people coming to Houston has changed the weather. Mr. Stapleton also provided an understanding on how predictions are made using weather models with real-time weather data.
“We are so incredibly grateful that Mr. Stapleton was able to join us,” said Amy McAfee, Science Teacher. “The students were able to ask some great questions and gain some much-needed insight.”
At the end of the project, as a culminating project; each group of students will produce a section of a graphic novel about meteorology for our second grade students that will teach them about the weather, create a scientific article for the Houston Chronicle, produce an abstract film and an interactive artistic app (similar to Pokémon Go).