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CLEAN Network Teleconferences

Each Tuesday at 1:00pm Eastern Time (12pm Central, 11am Mountain, 10am Pacific) CLEAN Network members meet on a teleconference call to update each other about their climate literacy projects, upcoming events, and funding opportunities and share information about best practices, key teaching/learning resources, and the development of collaborative activities. Often these teleconferences include special presentations by members and guests.

To participate in these teleconferences, you need to be a member of the CLEAN Network. To join the Network, sign up here Join CLEAN Network.

Members receive an email alert from the CLEAN Network listserv with information about each week's teleconference.

Call for convenors of AGU Climate Literacy sessions: Indicate your interest and associate your name with a session at this link

Upcoming 2015 Teleconferences

Recent Telecons | Past Telecons

March 31, 2015: Kristen Poppleton, Director of Education and Jothsna Harris, Education Coordinator, Will Steger Foundation
Title: Climate Minnesota: Local Stories, Community Solutions. A Statewide Public Engagement Project. (


The Will Steger Foundation( has launched Climate Minnesota: Local Stories, Community Solutions, a two-year project funded through the Minnesota Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund. Climate Minnesota responds to the urgent need to increase climate literacy and promote sustainable behavior change among Minnesotans by sharing the knowledge of local experts and the stories of individuals impacted by climate change. The project builds on the power of media for sharing stories and the importance of personal contact to reach a broader, more diverse audience.

The project's components include:
1) Convenings: Throughout 2015 and into 2016, we will hold a series of 12 public convenings across the state that will connect communities through local science, stories, and solutions that encompass the broad range of impacts that Minnesotans are seeing now. In addition we will hold two to four educator workshops that highlight local resources and build capacity.
2) Climate action teams: Each convening will culminate in the establishment and ongoing support of peer groups in all of the 12 communities. These groups will focus on sharing their "climate stories" and implementing community projects that advance climate change solutions.
3) Storytelling Collection: We're inviting Minnesotans across the state to share their stories of how climate change has impacted their lives, either in blog or podcast form. We will present these stories online and encourage them to be shared statewide as educational resources and as inspiration for climate action.
4) Television production: Twin Cities Public Television (TPT) is creating a TV production and video segments that examine the different ways that climate change is affecting Minnesotans in various settings.


Kristen Poppleton has spent the last five years developing and directing the Will Steger Foundation's climate change education program. Her work includes collaborating locally and nationally on climate and STEM education initiatives, creating original materials and training, strategic planning with the organization's board and staff to develop a clear educational philosophy, and seeking funding through partners and writing grants. In addition to her work with WSF Kristen is currently working as a Next Generation Science Standards curator assisting the National Science Teacher's Association identify educational resources that support the new standards.

Jothsna Harris is the Will Steger Foundation's Education Coordinator and is currently coordinating the series of public statewide Climate Minnesota Convenings. Prior to the Will Steger Foundation, Jothsna served as a 2013-14 MN GreenCorps Energy Conservation Member in the Burnsville Independent School District (ISD) 191, where she coordinated a multi-pronged energy conservation campaign, designed to engage students, staff and community members and to inspire behavioral changes. In addition to her current role at the Will Steger Foundation, Jothsna serves on the Executive Board for the Minnesota Green Schools Coalition through the USGBC MN Chapter and is working on a Master of Liberal Studies degree in Innovation and Sustainability at the University of Minnesota.

April 7, 2015: Johanna Bozuwa, Associate Director of Education, Earth Day Network
Topic: Climate Education Week

Abstract: Earth Day Network presents Climate Education week, April 18-25th. Climate Education Week will provide standards-based, state-of-the-art climate education to over 100,000 K-12 schools across the United States under the banner of our 2015 Earth Day theme, "It's Our Turn to Lead." To carry out Climate Education Week, EDN is developing an online toolkit that provides teachers with everything they will need to deliver lessons and activities related to climate science. It will include lesson plans for specific grade levels that meet both NGSS and CCS. The toolkit will be cross disciplinary, with activities ranging from scientific investigations of renewable energy to a lesson plan simulating policy recommendations to the UN. Earth Day service learning projects will also be provided to inspire educators and their students to take action on April 22nd.

Bio: Johanna assists in international outreach for Earth Day campaigns, organizing events all over the world. She works closely with the Green Schools Program, conducting research on the benefits of environmental education and green schools for students, communities and the environment. Johanna has worked in both environmental advocacy and education, including editing environmentally focused educational children's books at Nomad Press. Johanna earned her degree in Environmental Policy from Barnard College, where she was also an Athena for Leadership Studies Scholar.

April 14, 2015: Informal discussion

April 21, 2015: Informal discussion

April 28, 2015: Informal discussion

May 5, 2015: Informal discussion

May 12, 2015: Informal discussion

May 19, 2015: Informal discussion

May 26, 2015: Rachael Shwom, Assistant Professor, Department of Human Ecology, Climate & Society, School of Environmental and Biological Sciences, Rutgers University
Topic: Teaching Climate Social Science and Its Practices: A Two-Pronged Approach to Climate Literacy

June 2, 2015: Informal discussion

June 9, 2015: Informal discussion

June 16, 2015: Informal discussion

June 23, 2015: Informal discussion

June 30, 2015: Informal discussion

Recent 2015 Teleconferences

March 24, 2015: Minda Berbeco, Programs & Policy Director; Mark McCaffrey, climate literacy consultant; National Center for Science Education
Title: NCSE: Combating Science Denial on the Homefront and Beyond


Since launching our climate change initiative in 2012, Mark McCaffrey has been integral in NCSE's efforts to combat anti-science legislation, support educators, engage in professional development, and advise on curriculum development. Mark markedly raised NCSE's visibility with like-minded organizations and federal agencies–including an invite to participate in the White House's National Climate Assessment conference last year.

Thanks to our greater visibility, NCSE can work with educators, school districts, and state boards of education that encountering resistance to teaching climate change. But what's this mean and how do we actually help educators? In this webinar, we'll talk about the past 3 years of NCSE's work with climate change education, our plans for the future, and Mark's next steps in developing an international CLEAN.

Helpful Links:

Article 6 of the United National Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) signed by vitually all nations in 1992:

The Ministerial Declaration from COP20 making the case for Article 6:

Here's the nations that have identified Article 6 focal points:

Here's UNITAR's Guidance Note for Developing a National Climate Change Learning Strategy:

Climate KIC (Knowledge Innovation Community:

Climate KIC Learning Portal:


Minda Berbeco came to NCSE from UC Davis, where she was a post-doctoral scholar conducting research studies on climate change and agriculture. An expert on the carbon cycle and climate change, she has taught, written, and presented talks on the effects of climate change on forests and carbon and nitrogen cycling. Berbeco brings to NCSE a knowledge of climate change policy, greenhouse gas emissions and mitigation in agriculture and forests, and related topics.

As Programs and Policy Director at the National Center for Science Education (NCSE), Mark S. McCaffrey helped spearhead the NCSE Climate Change Education initiative and convene the Climate and Energy Literacy Summit. He served as Associate Scientist with the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) at the University of Colorado at Boulder from 2001 to 2011. During that time he helped lead the development of the NOAA Paleo Perspective on Abrupt Climate Change, the Climate TimeLIne Information Tool, and played a catalytic role in initiating and deploying the Climate Literacy and Energy Literacy frameworks. He was a Co-Principal Investigator of the Climate Literacy & Energy Literacy Network (CLEAN), and member of the International Polar Year Education, Outreach and Communications Committee. He holds a graduate degree in education from the University of Northern Colorado where he focused on water as an interdisciplinary and integrating theme for teaching. McCaffrey helped establish an education affilnity group with the National Climate Assessment Network, which is a public private partnership organized under the auspices of the U.S. Global Change Research Program. (see

The slides for this presentation are here (PowerPoint 2007 (.pptx) 11.8MB Mar19 15) and here (Acrobat (PDF) 3.1MB Mar19 15).

An audio recording of this teleconference call is posted here (MP3 Audio 19.6MB Mar24 15).

March 17, 2015: Brief Overview of Energy Literacy Video Series, Erin Twamley, Department of Energy

At the nexus of climate change is energy. From weather patterns and food chains, to human society's daily electricity and heating needs, to the toys kids use, energy is everywhere. Understanding energy and its role in our lives can help us make better informed decisions about our homes, communities, and our world. Incorporating energy into your classroom or program is crucial whether you are a science, math or even a social studies teacher.

To help bring energy to you and your students, check out the new Energy Literacy Video series and the Energy Literacy Quick Start Guide aligned to Common Core Standards and the Next Generation of Science Standards. The video series and accompanied lessons are also aligned with the Department of Energy's (DOE), Energy Literacy: Essential Principles and Fundamental Concepts for Energy Education framework. The videos help to engage students on the 7 Principles of energy outlined in the Framework.

The Quick Start Guide and sample Social Studies lessons help teachers connect energy to political and economic factors, policy decisions and quality of life. The video series is also available in Spanish and are found on YouTube.

The new Energy Literacy Video series and guides are a collaborative project with DOE, American Geosciences Institute, and the National Center for Science Education.

An audio recording of this teleconference call is posted here (MP3 Audio 11.5MB Mar18 15).

March 10, 2015: AGU Climate Literacy session proposal discussion

It is time to identify the climate literacy sessions we would like to have at the Fall AGU meeting (San Francisco, Dec 14-18, 2015) and the convenors who will organize those sessions. Please join the discussion. If you can't call in please let me know both your ideas for sessions and your interest in organizing a session. - Tamara Ledley

The link to the Google doc where we will be listing session proposal ideas and identifying convenors is here

An audio recording of this teleconference call is posted here (MP3 Audio 19.5MB Mar16 15).

March 3, 2015: Brian Drayton (Co-Director, Center for School Reform, TERC) and Gilly Puttick (Senior Scientist, TERC)
Title: Place, community, and biosphere: An overview of the TERC LIfe Science Initiative's climate education work

Abstract: Climate change education is one of the strands of work in the Life Sciences Initiative of the Center for School Reform at TERC. Beginning in the late 1980s, an early initiative included The Global Lab, the first curriculum available nationally that introduced probes and computers in the classroom. Another early product was the Ecology curriculum, with a hands-on unit on carbon cycling and climate change, presented from an ecological perspective.

Since that time, our work has evolved through successive phases of development, beginning with presentation of concepts related to climate change informed by the learning sciences, through increasing understanding of the importance of place and identity, to an emphasis on place-identity and an understanding of community involvement.

In this talk, we will describe this evolution, using examples drawn from programs and products we have developed. We will elaborate how theoretical frameworks drawn from conservation psychology and theories of behavior change have come to play a prominent role in how we think about engaging learners with the complexity of climate change.

Gilly Puttick's Bio: Gilly Puttick is currently a co-leader of the Life Sciences Initiative at TERC. Since 1991, Puttick has conducted research on science teaching and learning, developed life science curricula for elementary, middle and high school, and designed professional development programs for middle and high school science teachers. Her recent work has focused on climate change education, with the development of curricula and programs for formal and informal educational settings. Research and development projects include: Biocomplexity and the habitable planet, Girls Energy Conservation Corps, Scratch Girls: Designing games to learn about climate change, and The Climate Lab.

Brian Drayton Bio: Brian Drayton is Co-Director of the Center for School Reform, and co-leader of TERC's Life Sciences Initiative. Over the past 25 years, Drayton has conducted research on science pedagogy, helped create and research electronic communities for science education, and developed curriculum materials for middle and high school. TERC curricula related to climate change include the Global Lab; Ecology: a systems approach, Biocomplexity for a habitable planet, and The Climate Lab.

The slides for this presentation are here (PowerPoint 9.4MB Mar3 15) and here (Acrobat (PDF) 4.2MB Mar3 15)

An audio recording of this teleconference call is posted here (MP3 Audio 17.2MB Mar3 15).

February 24, 2015: David Brooks, Institute for Earth Science Research and Education (INSTESRE)
Title: Developing a Project-Based STE(A)M Program Around Environmental/Climate Science

Abstract: A successful STE(A)M program should integrate all components of the STEM paradigm plus, increasingly, an arts component. It should provide access points for a wide range of student interests and capabilities. It should involve a process which works across disciplines. It should promote schools as centers for education and student research. It may produce student outcomes which are not easily measurable by traditional subject-specitic testing.
Pyranometry is one example of a project-based approach to STEM education, focusing on a central theme of climate science. Students can build their own instruments, which will produce scientifically valid and interesting data to support student research for many years. The nature of the measurement encourages a development of a long-term institutional commitment to supporting student research.

David Brooks Bio:
David Brooks holds BS and MS degrees in physics and a PhD in atmospheric physics from Imperial College, University of London. He is a former researcher at NASA's Langley Research Center and Research Professor at Drexel University. He is a former PI for atmospheric science in the GLOBE Program. He founded the Institute for Earth Science Research and Education (IESRE) in 2004. He was PD for IESRE's NASA-funded Climate Science Research for Educators and Students project, completed in 2014, and is currently PD for one of 23 national environmental education grants awarded in 2014 by the Toyota USA Foundation.

The slides for this presentation are here (PowerPoint 2007 (.pptx) 2.5MB Feb23 15) and here (Acrobat (PDF) 889kB Feb23 15).

There is an audio recording of this teleconference call here (MP3 Audio 20.1MB Feb24 15).

February 17, 2015: Informal discussion

There is an audio recording of this teleconference call here (MP3 Audio 5.7MB Feb17 15).

February 10, 2015: Don Duggan-Haas, Director of Teacher Programming for The Paleontological Research Institution and its Museum of the Earth & Cayuga Nature Center
Title: Hydrofracking, Climate Change, and Evolution Outreach Yields Rules of Thumb for Teaching about Controversial Issues

The Paleontological Research Institution has a long history of nurturing public understanding of controversial issues. PRI's 11-year-old Museum of the Earth is built around the idea of evolution, and evolution education stretches back long before that. For more than a decade, PRI has engaged in climate change education, and, for the last several years, we have been engaged in energy education rooted in the science related to slickwater high-volume hydraulic fracturing (HVHF). These issues share common characteristics, and common rules of thumb are derived from our extensive work on teaching controversial issues. There are, however, differences amongst these issues and amongst the approaches that should be used in building understandings that can yield informed decisions.

Controversial issues tend to be interdisciplinary in nature; complex; play out across multiple scales of time and/or space; and are made difficult to understand by cognitive biases. Climate change and evolution share the characteristic of grounding in areas of consensus science. While there is consensus that HVHF causes environmental harm there is no consensus as to whether the environmental costs associated with HVHF are lesser or greater than those associated with other ways of generating energy on the scale currently required by modern society.

Rules of thumb for teaching about controversial issues include recognizing that: while grounding in evidence is essential, a focus simply upon the related science is insufficient to build understanding; effective approaches for certain audiences may backfire to the point of deepening misconceptions and related convictions if used with other audiences; reframing questions away from the most obvious and most polarizing questions is often helpful; argument in the traditional sense (and potentially advocacy in the traditional sense) may deepen convictions more than understandings; and; attending to issues of scale with familiar examples and user-friendly analogies can deepen understanding.,

Don Duggan-Haas is the Director of Teacher Programs at The Paleontological Research Institution and its Museum of the Earth in Ithaca, NY. Don has taught at Colgate, Cornell, and Michigan State Universities, Kalamazoo College, and Tapestry and Norwich (New York) High Schools. His current work focuses on teacher professional development and curriculum materials development that fosters understanding of the central ideas of Earth systems science by engaging students and teachers in the close study of their local environments, and using those local understandings to grok larger natural systems and human roles within those systems. Or, that's the aspiration at least.

There is an audio recording of this teleconference call here (MP3 Audio 18.8MB Feb13 15).

February 3, 2015: Informal discussion

There is an audio recording of this teleconference call here (MP3 Audio 16.7MB Feb13 15).

January 27, 2015: Informal discussion about communicating climate change to young audiences

Several CLEAN members are involved in the National Energy Education Summit (Jan. 26, 2015) and Energy and Climate Change Conference (Jan. 27-29, 2015) in Washington DC.

There is an audio recording of this teleconference call here (MP3 Audio 5MB Jan27 15).

January 20, 2015: Informal discussion - Preparation for Energy and Climate Conference - National Council for Science and the Environment.

Here is the Climate Literacy Logic Model that was used as a frame for the AGU Collective Impact on Climate Literacy discussion in December and will be used at the NCSE meeting next week Google doc Climate Literacy Logic Model I am not sure what the access setting are so let us know if you have trouble getting to the logic model. Here is a pdf of the Climate Literacy Logic Model (Acrobat (PDF) 611kB Jan20 15)

There is an audio recording of this teleconference call here (MP3 Audio 14.3MB Jan20 15).

January 13, 2015: Informal discussion

There is an audio recording of this teleconference call here (MP3 Audio 9.4MB Jan13 15).

January 6, 2015: Informal discussion - no recording made

Past Teleconferences

2014 Teleconferences

2013 Teleconferences

2012 Teleconferences

2011 Teleconferences

2010 Teleconferences

2009 and 2008 Teleconferences
If anyone has material from the 2009 and 2008 teleconference calls, please contact Tamara Ledley. We would like to preserve our historic record. Thanks.

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