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Getting to know our people behind Climate Ready Classrooms

A blog post by Myah Guild

Myah Guild
Education and Learning Officer

Posted 31/07/2020

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This is the third of our 'getting to know' blog posts, where we talk to those who work for our charity and find out a little bit more about what they do and how they came to work with us.

In this blog we speak to two of our Education Development Officers, Myah Guild and Josh Cannell, who both joined us in November 2019 to develop and roll out the Climate Ready Classrooms programme to teachers and pupils in secondary schools across Scotland.

 

When did you start work with Keep Scotland Beautiful and what does your role involve?

Josh: I was a science teacher for four years and am passionate about education and our environment. I wanted to apply my teaching skills to a context outside of mainstream education.

As Education Development Officers, Myah and I deliver the Climate Ready Classroom (CRC) workshop to schools all over Scotland.

Myah: I wanted to work with within widespread, positive education, aimed at making a visible and meaningful difference. Conservation and education have always been huge interests of mine, so it is great to be able to combine them. On a daily basis, I develop and deliver courses, like Climate Ready Classrooms.

 

What does your typical day look like?

Josh: I work a mixture of office days and being out and about. I have delivered the Climate Ready Classrooms workshop to schools in the central belt, west coast, and Orkney and, alongside the Pupil Climate Ready Classrooms, Myah and I also run a teacher’s version of the course. The face-to-face Climate Ready Classrooms workshops run for one whole school day and have been moved to an online format during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Myah: As part of the Climate Ready Classrooms course, we ask participants – students and educators – to think about the climate action that needs to be taken by society, by themselves as individuals, and by themselves as part of a larger group. Once they have considered and compared ideas, they pledge to both an individual and group action, which they will commit to undertaking after being trained.

Every training session is different and the energy and motivation that participants often bring gives rise to moments of honesty, humour, innovation, and, sometimes, all of these combined. For example, one student decided to write their pledge in the form of a rap, and another drew very realistic caricatures of politicians in their societal action answer.

During Covid-19, the Education team have adapted most resources for online use. Josh and I also deliver the Climate Ready Classrooms course for pupils and trainers online, via video conferencing platforms, and send off work for certification via email, which, on a positive note, has lowered our working carbon footprints significantly.

All participants fill in an evidence form throughout the workshops where they make climate action pledges.  If these are approved by The Carbon Literacy Project, who accredit our course, they receive a certificate to say they are carbon literate.

 

What are you working on right now?

Josh: The Climate Ready Classrooms course is being continually adapted to fit the new requirements during the pandemic. We are currently in the third round of adaptation, which will allow teachers to deliver material complementary to our online course.

 

Myah: I am also currently working on Our World: Summer Challenge. It is a one-week summer course for Early Years and Primary level students, exploring the non-human neighbours we share our world with and learning about how important each life form is for life on Earth.

What are your hopes for Scotland's climate?

Josh: Scotland’s unique climate supports some of the most exciting and varied ecosystems in the UK. I hope the environmental education we provide will help prepare our young people to continue to support our amazing wilderness and wildlife.

 

Myah: I hope that Scotland truly becomes a carbon neutral, clean energy country and that this helps other places to do the same. I also hope that the work we do contributes towards the knowledge needed to achieve that goal, with plans to “rewild” large parts of Scotland’s environment playing a key part. It would be great if restoring much of Scotland’s environment to its natural state - allowing native life forms, like trees, animals, and flowers, to thrive - was part of reaching the 2045 goal, because Scotland’s natural world is unparalleled.

If you want to find out more about Climate Ready Classrooms or get in touch with Myah or Josh you can find their contact details on our people pages.

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