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1a. Pre-Conference - Creating a Profile in the Virtual Classroom



1) Have each student respond to the following two questions: what is climate change, and how does it affect you? Discuss how different students may view climate change differently - as will different groups of people around the world, particularly as they are impacted differently by climate change and the systems that produce climate change.

Next, read the following quotes from various Indigenous peoples about climate change. Consider how these perspectives challenge or reinforce students' existing perspectives. Have students respond to one or more of the quotes by:

  • asking questions
  • expressing in what ways these perspectives challenge their own
  • sharing their own perspectives of climate change based on where they are from and what they see around themselves

“Indigenous peoples live in the most fragile ecosystems of the Earth, namely: tropical wet forests, mountainous systems, coastal plains, deserts, moors and islands, among others, and are human populations highly vulnerable to climate variability and change. The negative impacts due to global climate change threat all forms of life that currently exist in our Mother Earth, as well as the diverse human cultures, natural environments and livelihoods of rural human populations.”*

“Global climate change currently observed has been the result of the excessive and unlimited economic growth of highly industrialized countries, which emitted huge amounts of greenhouse gas emissions to the terrestrial atmosphere at the expense of poor countries that are suffering the adverse impacts of climate change.”*

“Thanks to our ancestral knowledge and learning, indigenous peoples have had the capacity to adapt to the various pressures and to the historical environmental and socioeconomic changes. Thus, we have knowledge, technologies and capacities to adapt to changing environments and could contribute to mitigation and adaptation to climate change.”*

“Even though we are suffering disproportionately from climate change impacts, we contribute the least to global emissions; nevertheless we have been marginalized from participating in the development and implementation of policies, programs, plans and actions related to our local adaptation.”**

“Mother Earth is a source of life which needs to be protected, not a resource to be exploited and commodified as a ‘natural capital.’ We have our place and our responsibilities within Creation’s sacred order. We feel the sustaining joy as things occur in harmony with the Earth and with all life that it creates and sustains.”***

*From the Declaration on Climate Change and Indigenous Peoples of El Salvador

**From the Bhutan Declaration on Climate Change and Mountain Indigenous Peoples

*** From the Indigenous Peoples Global Conference on Rio+20 and Mother Earth

2) Have students use this discussion as a framework for filling out their TIGed Profile on the virtual classroom. Each student should answer the following three questions, and find an image online that captures some aspect of how they view climate change.

  • A) What is your vision for a sustainable world?
  • B) What are you planning to do to make this vision a reality?
  • C) What impact has colonization had on our journey to a sustainable planet?

3) Have the students go on a ‘virtual scavenger hunt’ to find other profiles on the website. For this treasure hunt, students need to identify two images from their fellow students and reflect on how their peers' answers and image touched them. The responses can be added to the bottom of their profile.

4) The goal is to have students complete their profile up to 80%.

Blog posts for this activity can be posted here.


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