Think for a moment about one reason you care about SDG13: Climate Action. Why is it important that governments, businesses, and billions of individuals focus on this goal?
- It’s not going to be easy to get all those people to take action on SDG13, and sometimes it can feel impossible. Read through the quotations. In terms of inspiring hope and commitment to action, choose one that feels most powerful for you.
- As you read the quotation, what are some of your feelings? What are some of your thoughts? What are some actions you could take to bring SDG13 into your life now?
- Draw a picture, design, or symbol to represent your feelings and thoughts or actions. Create something that will remind you of your goals for SDG13 and how you can maintain optimism / hope when it’s hard. You can add the quotation, or other words, in your piece if you’d like.
- Share your picture / design with someone else and talk about your the Discussion questions
What’s one reason you chose the quote that you did?
What are some feelings you had reading it, and making your picture / design?
Can you think of someone to share this with?
This exercise can easily be extended to a longer time. To increase the level of emotional engagement, before starting the instructions, ask students to share some of their concerns or fears about the future of the earth. Then, instructions #1 and #3 will be effective small group discussions. For step #5, have small groups follow the Discussion questions, and then share some key points in the whole group.
For older students, this can be followed by a writing assignment: If a friend was feeling hopeless about the future of the planet, what would you advise to help them turn that feeling into greater determination for climate action?
To expand this further, explain that Christiana Figueres was the chief negotiator for the United Nations for the Paris Climate Accords – and she almost gave up this work because of deep despair. Here is a story where she explains how her pain about the state of the climate turned into greater conviction (show the excerpt starting with https://youtu.be/RbjmSamQ2zU?t=302 and end at 10:55, where she ends her story). As a group, discuss: What are some of Ms. Figueres’ feelings that you can relate to? What did she do with her feelings of grief and despair? (important note: She STILL feels sad, we can see her tears in this video – so it’s not about getting rid of sorrow — she USES her sorrow to fuel her determination).