News

Livermore teacher inspires students with climate change curriculum

Rodriguez among cohort of educators picked for program designed by lab foundation

The Carbon Cleanup Initiative toolkit developed by the Livermore Lab Foundation features hands-on activities to help educate students about climate change. (Photo courtesy of Joey Rodriguez)

Livermore High School teacher Joey Rodriguez is one of a select group of California educators teaching with the Carbon Cleanup Initiative educational toolkit developed by the Livermore Lab Foundation.

Livermore High School teacher Joey Rodriguez. (Photo courtesy of LVJUSD).

Rodriguez is bringing the science of carbon neutrality, capture and storage to the classroom, with hands-on activities that students can apply in the real world and even locally in Livermore.

"Compared to lessons used in the past, I felt these activities really helped students understand climate change and the importance of getting to carbon neutrality," said Rodriguez, who teaches conceptual physics and biology.

"By using real world applications and examples, it made the students more invested because they saw something tangible. They were better able to relate to the content, see the problems firsthand, and explore possible solutions in trying to reverse climate change," he added.

Two of his freshman students, Shrish Prenkrishna and Malana Island, echoed similar sentiments.

Help sustain the local news you depend on.

Your contribution matters. Become a member today.

Join

"I like this curriculum because it was a lot more interactive than the previous things I learned with," Prenkrishna told the Weekly, adding that while the curriculum conveyed the severity of climate change, it did so in a way that wasn't "bland."

"A lot of the other curriculum I've been taught sort of teaches you about the effects of climate change but this one really teaches about the cause and it also gives solutions to the problem too, which is really helpful because I think a lot of us our age are, at some point in our lives, going to be working toward reversing climate change," Island added.

The Carbon Cleanup Initiative materials include four distinct units, representing 14 hours of experiential learning for direct classroom implementation, according to the program website. Activities are designed to work in consecutive order or as standalone units with cumulative learning. LLF received funding from the Clean and Sustainable Energy Fund to develop the educational materials and conduct public outreach.

Both Island and Prenkrishna said that being introduced to the Carbon Cleanup Initiative made them become more aware of the climate change impacts they see in their own lives.

Island said she notices the water levels of the creek near her home getting lower each year. She also said that she's noticed on vacations with her family over the years the shift from seeing vibrant coral in the oceans and active wildlife being present to more desolate conditions on recent trips.

Prenkrishna noted the extreme weather changes he's witnessed since moving to California around 2016, including severe wildfires that he said seemingly get worse each year.

Both students also said that after going through the modules and the activities, they enjoyed completing the prompts that asked what they noticed and what they wondered as it gave them the opportunity to reflect more deeply about the content and hear the perspectives of their peers.

Rodriguez has been teaching at Livermore High for eight years and he said that the Climate Cleanup Initiative is a true example of "plug and play" material that is thorough, engaging and very student driven.

"It immediately has that application as opposed to having to create something from scratch -- which is something that we still do -- but from an emotional standpoint, these past two years, I don't think society really realizes what teachers have been put through and what has been asked of us, so I really like the fact that this was probably the first curriculum that was truly plug and play," Rodriguez said.

LLF is a 501c3 nonprofit organization supporting the fundamental science and research at Lawrence Livermore National Lab (LLNL). The Lab has been involved in the research and implications of carbon management for more than 25 years, with approximately 70 scientists, engineers and technicians dedicated to finding solutions, according to the program website.

Stay informed

Get daily headlines sent straight to your inbox in our Express newsletter.

Stay informed

Get daily headlines sent straight to your inbox in our Express newsletter.

Looking for more Livermore stories? The Livermore Vine will be your new source of vital news and information. Sign up to be among the first to get our daily local news headlines sent to your inbox for free.

Cierra Bailey
   
Cierra started her journalism career after college as an editorial intern with the Pleasanton Weekly in 2014. After pursuing opportunities in digital and broadcast media and attending graduate school at Syracuse University, she’s back as the editor of the Vine. Read more >>

Follow PleasantonWeekly.com and the Pleasanton Weekly on Twitter @pleasantonnews, Facebook and on Instagram @pleasantonweekly for breaking news, local events, photos, videos and more.

Your support is vital to us continuing to bring you education news. Become a member today.

Livermore teacher inspires students with climate change curriculum

Rodriguez among cohort of educators picked for program designed by lab foundation

by / Pleasanton Weekly

Uploaded: Sun, Apr 10, 2022, 12:30 pm

Livermore High School teacher Joey Rodriguez is one of a select group of California educators teaching with the Carbon Cleanup Initiative educational toolkit developed by the Livermore Lab Foundation.

Rodriguez is bringing the science of carbon neutrality, capture and storage to the classroom, with hands-on activities that students can apply in the real world and even locally in Livermore.

"Compared to lessons used in the past, I felt these activities really helped students understand climate change and the importance of getting to carbon neutrality," said Rodriguez, who teaches conceptual physics and biology.

"By using real world applications and examples, it made the students more invested because they saw something tangible. They were better able to relate to the content, see the problems firsthand, and explore possible solutions in trying to reverse climate change," he added.

Two of his freshman students, Shrish Prenkrishna and Malana Island, echoed similar sentiments.

"I like this curriculum because it was a lot more interactive than the previous things I learned with," Prenkrishna told the Weekly, adding that while the curriculum conveyed the severity of climate change, it did so in a way that wasn't "bland."

"A lot of the other curriculum I've been taught sort of teaches you about the effects of climate change but this one really teaches about the cause and it also gives solutions to the problem too, which is really helpful because I think a lot of us our age are, at some point in our lives, going to be working toward reversing climate change," Island added.

The Carbon Cleanup Initiative materials include four distinct units, representing 14 hours of experiential learning for direct classroom implementation, according to the program website. Activities are designed to work in consecutive order or as standalone units with cumulative learning. LLF received funding from the Clean and Sustainable Energy Fund to develop the educational materials and conduct public outreach.

Both Island and Prenkrishna said that being introduced to the Carbon Cleanup Initiative made them become more aware of the climate change impacts they see in their own lives.

Island said she notices the water levels of the creek near her home getting lower each year. She also said that she's noticed on vacations with her family over the years the shift from seeing vibrant coral in the oceans and active wildlife being present to more desolate conditions on recent trips.

Prenkrishna noted the extreme weather changes he's witnessed since moving to California around 2016, including severe wildfires that he said seemingly get worse each year.

Both students also said that after going through the modules and the activities, they enjoyed completing the prompts that asked what they noticed and what they wondered as it gave them the opportunity to reflect more deeply about the content and hear the perspectives of their peers.

Rodriguez has been teaching at Livermore High for eight years and he said that the Climate Cleanup Initiative is a true example of "plug and play" material that is thorough, engaging and very student driven.

"It immediately has that application as opposed to having to create something from scratch -- which is something that we still do -- but from an emotional standpoint, these past two years, I don't think society really realizes what teachers have been put through and what has been asked of us, so I really like the fact that this was probably the first curriculum that was truly plug and play," Rodriguez said.

LLF is a 501c3 nonprofit organization supporting the fundamental science and research at Lawrence Livermore National Lab (LLNL). The Lab has been involved in the research and implications of carbon management for more than 25 years, with approximately 70 scientists, engineers and technicians dedicated to finding solutions, according to the program website.

Comments

buklau
Registered user
Avila
on Apr 10, 2022 at 9:23 pm
buklau, Avila
Registered user
on Apr 10, 2022 at 9:23 pm

What China teaches their students: Math, science, engineering, technology

What US teachers their students: Global warming, CRT, LGBT, gender theory, climate change

Who's getting all the high paying tech jobs in Silicon Valley: the former
Who's racking up student loan debt: the latter


Joe V
Registered user
Birdland
on Apr 11, 2022 at 10:04 am
Joe V, Birdland
Registered user
on Apr 11, 2022 at 10:04 am

Thankful that we have teachers like Joey Rodriguez, who dedicate their careers to teaching!
Especially on this subject!


Jake Waters
Registered user
Birdland
on Apr 13, 2022 at 8:50 am
Jake Waters, Birdland
Registered user
on Apr 13, 2022 at 8:50 am

This is exactly why California Public schools are losing more and more students.


Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.

Post a comment

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.