Friday, March 1, 2019

psa: #climatestrike #fridaysforfuture

On March 15, young teens--especially girls--will be leading the fight to make sure adults in powerful places see the threat of global climate change for what it is:  urgent and deathly.

Their efforts are connected by social media.  As I type this, thousands of students in Hamburg are marching in the streets, and the #FridaysforFuture school strike is happening all over the world.

Allow me to introduce you to some the of girls who can see, with the clarity of youth, that if we don't address climate change, nothing else matters much--especially to girls and women, who are disproportionately affected, whatever their color, by the impact of a planet in danger.

Greta Thunberg @gretathunberg might be considered the originator of it all.  Seen here in her TEDxStockholm talk, this Swedish student and activist (who has Asperger's syndrome) decided to leave school and sit outside the Swedish legislature as a demand that the government actually act on the Paris Agreement.  She reports being inspired by the teens who organized the March for Our Lives after the MSD shooting last year.  You will want to listen to every minute.

She is now joined in her efforts by students around the globe who are taking part in regular Friday school strikes, for, as Greta says, "Why should I be studying for a future that soon will be no more, when no one is doing anything whatsoever to save that future? And what is the point of learning facts within the school system, when the most important facts...clearly means nothing to our politicians and our society?"

Here are some American youth leaders you maybe should get to know.  They are disrupting the complacency and the denial of which I personally am guilty, and inspiring me to get real about the state of the earth for my children and students.

Alexandria Villasenor @AlexandriaV2005  New York
Isra Hirsi @israhirsi  Minneapolis
Haven Coleman @ruthiehaven  Denver
Jamie Margolin @Jamie_Margolin

and, here in my own state,
KM Benson @releaf4us  Maryland

These girls are working towards a coordinated worldwide school #ClimateStrike on Friday, March 15.  That day I will be hosting Poetry Friday, and I would like to invite--URGE--all of us who care about the lives of young people to show support by participating in whatever local Climate Strike you can find, and by using your blog posts as an action to address this crisis and create hope.  There's even an organization for us:

Find it on Twitter @kidlit4climate

And now, even though I've posted it before, I'm posting it again and giving it to Youth Climate Strike US @climatestrikeUS--one of my favorite poems I've ever written and one that I hope can move and shake us all.

The round-up today is hosted by Linda at TeacherDance.  March (heh) March on over and dig in for the long haul.


  1. Such an inspiring group of young people. They give me so much hope. Your poem pairs perfectly!

  2. I absolutely take the earth day writing climate challenge. I have no idea what I will write about...but, you have inspired me with that clarity of youth line...and the girls sharing smaller and smaller nibbles. What a great poem!

  3. Greta (which I accidentally typed as "Great" at first) is really grabbing the bull by the horns. I put it in my calendar. Thanks, Heidi.

  4. I see that one of your list is from Denver, Heidi. I will look for her. I imagine it means there will be something here. Powerful & sad Ted talk. And we can push for more, but sadly our president is not helping. Need to act to make that change! I see why you love your poem, just right words.

  5. Wow, Heidi, just wow! This is absolutely gorgeous! Can't wait to share it with our fifth graders, who are currently studying plastic waste issues.

  6. Thank you for sharing this inspiring young lady's message, Heidi. Your poem is a powerful reminder of the urgency of our situation.

  7. You have a way of using metaphor and extending it to bring the point about sharply, "one small slice of the Pacific Ocean." I want to know more about this movement and how, on our small piece of Earth, we can take part and inspire change.

  8. Heidi, thank you for sharing the Ted Talk and the amazing work that young girls are doing to change opinions. I have always thought climate change is real and so I looked up the young girl in NY who is campaigning so the future can be brighter for all. I will bookmark March 15th. Can't wait to hear more. Your poem is a call to action.

  9. I can't get my mind off of the environment and what we are not doing to help. My last protest March sign here in Chicago, this past January was all about this and focused on the polar bears and the ice melting. I agree with all here, if there's no earth left what else matters–we all have to work together on this. Thanks for this post Heidi, I'm featuring two indigenous women who are trying to help Climate change next week. Thanks too for the Ted talk, all your links and your heartfelt poem.

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Thanks for joining in the wild rumpus!