Climate Science Students Hit the Streets

Upper School students in Ryan Zaremba’s Climate Science class recently engaged in some hands-on beautification of the local neighborhood surrounding campus as part of their observation of Earth Day.

In the second year of this course, which investigates the mechanisms contributing to the overall change in our climate, students have been studying the production of CO2 and other greenhouse gases and their effects on local, regional and global weather patterns.

In leading students to reflect upon their carbon footprint and how they can improve the sustainability of our lifestyles, Zaremba saw an idyllic opportunity to put practice into action, as he and fellow US science teacher Xiao Zhang led two groups of students down streets adjacent to the school with trash-picking sticks in hand, carefully retrieving litter and placing it into garbage bags as they progressed. Of the three juniors and eight seniors in the class, two participated as remote learners and cleaned areas proximal to their homes to fully connect with Zaremba and the other students.

Zaremba was excited to lead his students on this excursion this year, since it wasn’t possible last year when the pandemic first began and the entire school was learning remotely. He shared, “I’m proud of them. They are a very engaged group that obviously cares about the environment and the existential threat that climate change poses to their generation and beyond.”

Colonel Parker once said, “The needs of society should determine the work of the school. The supreme need of society is ideal citizenship. Ideal citizenship demands for the individual the highest degree of knowledge, skill, power and service.” These types of lessons and experiences between Zaremba, Zhang and their students further highlight the relevance and importance of this quote and how our community lives this every day.

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Francis W. Parker School educates students to think and act with empathy, courage and clarity as responsible citizens and leaders in a diverse democratic society and global community.