The GrassRoots Action & Democracy Education (GRADE) Program is an initiative introducing the principles of grassroots democratic action and participatory democracy to children in grades K - 12 with an initial focus on grade 5. The program consists of multi-week, student-led sessions where a facilitator gives students tools to learn about the history of grassroots and participatory democracy, identify an area where they feel a need to take action, plan a community campaign to address their action area and implement the campaign. Each session takes place in a classroom or structured environment (i.e student group or youth organization meeting) - while GRADE provides a curriculum for learning about grassroots democracy and template for organizing, each session focuses on a unique area determined by the students leading the sessions. The student-led democracy campaign will create at least one tangible resource for the community to engage with their work. Students interested in helping build the GRADE program are invited to help update the curriculum and are invited to mentor students in GRADE the following year. Each GRADE year culminates when students are invited to participate in a People’s Movement Assembly (PMA) where the actions to bring about the world they envision as well as codifying their goals into a constitution are discussed.
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Climate Democracy in Action! is a set of activities built to be used in conjunction with each other for several hours worth of climate democracy movement building with students in grades 4 - 5, meant to help inspire interest and facilitate learning around grassroots democratic action and how kids can be active leaders and participants in the fight against climate chaos. Motivated teachers can use these activities as a framework for allowing students to choose an action that could be carried out for Earth Day. CLICK HERE TO VIEW & DOWNLOAD CLIMATE DEMOCRACY IN ACTION!
In the News This set of activities is designed to help students delve into a news story that highlights youth taking action against climate change as plaintiffs in the groundbreaking constitutional climate lawsuit Juliana vs. U.S. Students have the opportunity to explore the news story and share how the story makes them feel. Additionally, the students have the opportunity to share ideas about taking climate action in their own communities.
Youth Take Action This set of activities highlights several of the students who are a part of the Juliana vs. U.S. lawsuit and allows the class to make inferences about why the students were inspired to take part in the action due to information within their biographies. After working with groups and discussing the reasons the climate activists wanted to take action, the students explore different ways to define community and create art in support of their ideas for taking action within their school community.
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