Civic environmentalism is a collective action to address critical environmental issues and implement solutions through democratic processes that will result in an improved and sustainable community.
Through six lessons, students identify, analyze, and explore specific details and events related to the origins of the environmental movement in the United States up to the current global climate crisis. Featuring important figures, movements, and music across several decades, the unit highlights how climate change affects people and communities differently, especially in regards to race and class.
Along with activities in the unit lessons and a series of assessments, students participate in paired and group research and writing. At the conclusion of the unit, students present a group project that demonstrates key components of civic environmentalism.
This unit made possible in part by Leaving a Positive Legacy, Inc. Positive Legacy is a 501c3 nonprofit that integrates music and service to benefit people and the planet.
Singer-Songwriters and the Environmental Movement
How did the singer-songwriters of the 1960s and 70s address the concerns of the environmental movement?
Confronting the Climate Crisis
How can society lower the amount of greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere?
Kanye and Katrina: Environmental Racism in New Orleans
What was Hurricane Katrina, and how did Black Americans articulate the frustrations they felt in its aftermath?
The Science and Civics of the Flint Water Crisis (High School Version)
What is the Flint water crisis, and why did it occur?
Cleaning up the Plastic Beach (Middle School/High School Version)
How is plastic made, how does it affect our marine environments, and how can plastic waste be eliminated?
Greta Thunberg, Music, and the Climate Crisis
How have musicians helped spread climate activist Greta Thunberg’s message?