Lessons and Memories

This month and blog may not be the end of my participation in GenGreen, but it also could be; in this nature, I wanted to use this blog as a chance to reflect, share my gratitude and look to the future.

GenGreen has been one of the most organic and random rides I’ve ever been on, and one I have truly learned endless amounts from in more ways than inspiring ones. It has often been an uphill battle for attention against a busy and apathetic world swirling within a disorienting pandemic. This blog itself sits mainly unread and underappreciated, but as a resource I have produced hopefully for much time to come.

That said, I leave GenGreen feeling a resounding success in the many events we have attended and held, the many visitors our site has had and the many amazing kids I’ve had chances to meet and teach. From the original plan broken to me in startling fashion by my dear friend and fellow officer Claire, to this Saturday’s Read-Aloud event, it feels as if the work did not once stop.

We started early last spring, and at first it was a complete grind. We personally phone-banked hundreds, if not thousands, of numbers, and emailed thousands more; all of this to draw some attention and visitors to the comprehensive website being constructed. Aside from the technological and programming aspects, the grind to fill this skeleton site with real content began. Producing worksheets, videos, lessons and links, we all contributed to what is now a stand-alone resource for climate education- one we all would have wanted as elementary or even middle schoolers without proper, or any, climate education.

This website and aggressive campaigns for attention soon turned to focusing on online events. Since our general turning point we have had a storytime Read-Aloud event every month, and have been so lucky to have attendees at each one, even when it was fewer than our own ranks present. More so, we have been even luckier to have been invited to so many classrooms and PTA events. I look back fondly at lessons like our Spanish-English school presentations, or our PTA night breakout rooms with kids flooding the Zoom chats. While I am not writing this blog purely to reminisce, these events, a part of a much larger range of them, will stay with me forever as grassroots, sometimes awkward, always funny and always original memories.

On a more sentimental scale, GenGreen has again been that growing dot in a virtual world and changing climate. Seeing a tangible space that needs growth, climate education, I am so proud of the work we have done, the programs we have held and the resources we have published. With so much to do it is incredibly hard to measure success, but I have felt fulfilled in the relationships, interactions and impacts I have seen and can see put in place for the future.

Ultimately, and outside of my sentimental appreciations and fondness of my county’s elementary programs or students, there truly is an amazing and historic need for climate and environmental education. The world is in complete crisis, and the younger generations will have to be the ones to step up. Educating them on not only how to deal with this reality, but planting the seeds for them to help solve it past its current existential state is critical in all of our perseverance.

Please, to any young readers or visiting teachers, educators or parents, take our site for what it is: a comprehensive climate site, built for free for students and committed to climate education. Use our site and spread it far and wide as a resource. Have fun with this information, but take it seriously.

I cannot understate how much the amazing memories, irreplaceable lessons in realism and non-profits, crazy kid interactions and chance to feel like you are contributing to something greater has meant. Thank you so much to everyone who has supported our site and attended our events, it means the world to me, the one we are trying to save. Hopefully I will return and GenGreen will continue to prosper in Moco and beyond, but regardless it will stand here at www.gengreen.net, and its legacy should last in the great students and families it crossed paths with.

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