GOOD

Italy will require kids learn about climate change in school starting in 2020

Italy has already been seeing the effects of climate change. Extreme weather (including early spring frost and a summer drought) was responsible for a 57% drop in Italy's olive harvest. Now, Italian children will see lessons in climate change, as Italy becomes the first country to make climate change education mandatory.

Italy's education minister, Lorenzo Fioramonti, is requiring climate change education for all students. Beginning in September 2020, all students will receive 33 hours a year of lessons on climate change and environmental sustainability, which is about one hour per school week. But that's just to start. Fioramonti's goal is to bring climate change education into other subjects, such as geography and math, where students would look at traditional subjects from a sustainable perspective.


The curriculum, which will be folded into current civic classes, will be created with the help of environmental experts and will teach students the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. The educational style will vary depending on their age group. Fioramonti is considering a "fairy-tale" model to teach children aged 6 to 11, meaning stories from various cultures will be taught, emphasizing their environmental connection. Middle school children will be taught more technical information, and high schoolers will get an in-depth education on the United Nations' 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

RELATED: Climate change is unearthing artifacts from melting glaciers

"The entire ministry is being changed to make sustainability and climate the centre of the education model," Fioramonti told Reuters. "I want to make the Italian education system the first education system that puts the environment and society at the core of everything we learn in school."

Last September, Fioramonti encouraged Italian students to skip school and participate in the global climate strikes. Fioramonti believed the absences were reasonable because students' lives are "threatened by environmental devastation and an unsustainable economic development."

Some environmentalists worry Fioramonti's curriculum might be "too dogmatic." Chicco Testa, president of the environmental group Assombiente, urged officials to look at a variety of sources. "To listen to people who say different things is good," Chicco told the New York Times. "What the U.N. says is not gospel."

RELATED: New study finds whales might be our best defense against climate change

Others laud the decision, but warn that the burden shouldn't be placed only on children. Adults still have the responsibility to act now. Fioramonti says the goal is to create intergenerational understanding, rather than leave the problem for one generation to solve. He plans to "build a strong bridge between old and new generations around sustainable development as a social glue."

A recent NPR poll found that there is considerable support for climate change education in the United States, with 80% of parents in favor of having their kids learn about the issue. Support for climate change education is growing less partisan. The same poll found that two thirds of Republicans and nine out of 10 Democrats were supportive of the idea, regardless of whether or not they had kids.

As we head into the future, we need to prepare children for what's to come. Climate change education might be a start.

The Planet

Between Alexa, Siri, and Google, artificial intelligence is quickly changing us and the way we live. We no longer have to get up to turn on the lights or set the thermostat, we can find the fastest route to work with a click, and, most importantly, tag our friends in pictures. But interacting with the world isn't the only thing AI is making easier – now we can use it save the world, too.

Keep Reading Show less
Good News

An anonymous White House official claims President Trump cruelly limited Hispanic immigrants in their new book, "A Warning."

The book, to be released on November 19, gives an alleged insider account of the Trump White House and paints a picture of the president as a chaotic man who lacks the mental and moral acumen required for the job.

The anonymous staffer says that Trump once feigned a Hispanic accent and made fun of women attempting to immigrate to the U.S.

Keep Reading Show less
Politics
Yad Vashem

Since 1992, the Jewish Foundation for the Righteous has been holding reunion ceremonies between Holocaust survivors and rescuers once a year. But the tradition is coming to an end, as many have died or are too frail to travel. What might be the last reunion of its kind took place when a 92-year-old woman met up with the two surviving family members that she helped hide during the Holocaust, and their descendants.

Sarah Yanai and Yossi Mor introduced Melpomeni Dina (nee Gianopoulou) to their almost 40 family members, all decedents of the Mordechai family, the family of seven that Dina and her two sisters hid during WWII. "There are no words to describe this feeling," Dina told the Jeruselum Post. "It is very emotional for us to be together again."

Keep Reading Show less
Culture
via Reddit

When parents choose not to vaccinate their children, they are taking what they believe to be calculated risk: to protect my child from a vaccination injury, such as autism, I will put them at risk of developing a host of diseases, including measles, tetanus, mumps, polio, hepatitis B, and diphtheria.

They also choose to put others, especially babies that are too young to be immunized, at risk of life-threatening illnesses.

This reasoning is incredibly selfish given the fact that there is absolutely no evidence that vaccinations cause autism.

Keep Reading Show less
Health
via Twitter / It's going down

Popular Mobilization (or PopMob) a Portland, Oregon group comprised of anti-fascists and leftists, came up with a brilliant way to make unwitting white supremacists raise money for a charity that helps undocumented people.

PopMob asked its supporters to pledge a nickel, dime, or any small amount of money for every white supremacist that showed up to a rally that took place on August 17.

Some 300 fascists from white supremacist groups, including the Proud Boys, Patriot Prayer, and the Three Percenters, attended a rally on the Portland waterfront that lasted only about 30 minutes.

When all the donations were tallied up, the PopMob Fundraiser generated $36,017.69.

Keep Reading Show less
Politics