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Dear fellow-teachers,

 

Rigorous science tells us just how bad it can get. That the ocean and beaches will fill ever quicker with plastic waste, erasing their beauty while decimating their ecosystems. That chances are horrifyingly high that the planet will warm toward catastrophe, which the UN warns could wipe out progress toward creating a sustainable world. 

 

And yet schools and teachers worldwide have utterly failed to make the dramatic paradigm shift to face this reality, a cultural shift the latest IPCC report points out is essential to preventing global warming from reaching a tipping point, beyond which humans will be unable to prevent cataclysmic warming. A recent NPR poll shows that most parents and teachers agree climate change should be taught, but most teachers don’t because it doesn’t fit into their subject. 

 

That can not be. 

 

If we are to have any chance of building a hopeful future, we need to tear down traditions and rebuild our curricula, refocusing on increasing the capacity of the next generations to not only deeply understand but also help solve the global environmental disasters they didn’t create. 

 

What can we do about it?

 

As teachers, we're trapped in a school system that changes at glacial speeds, and yet we must transform it seemingly overnight. If we are to make this happen, we must go to a place outside the business-as-usual ways that have gotten us to where we are - horribly powerless and lost at a watershed moment in human history. 

 

So if you haven’t already, educate yourself about the realities we’re facing. Read the summary of the IPCC report that's in this app. Another NPR poll shows just how little teachers understand climate change. Learn about the facts and start a Teachers-for-future group at your school. Then go to your principal and work with them toward for a paradigm shift. Collaboration needs to go all the way up the chain, including the superintendent, the board, and state, provincial and national governments.

 

Teach your students leadership by leading. Teach them fearlessness and to recover from failure by yourself overcoming the bumps along the way. And don't just teach them depressing facts about climate change and plastic ocean pollution. Science also shows us that fear and anxiety cripple the desire to learn. Action and progress are what inspire passion, learning and hope. Action and progress lie at the heart of FateChanger.

 

This is no time for ninnies. The future is dimming fast. Stand up. There is no time to wait.

With hope & determination,

Peder (the teacher who imagined FateChanger)