The Issue:

Climate Change is impacting everyone around the world. Temperatures are rising, we’re experiencing more severe storms, increased droughts, etc. All of us must do our part to understand what factors cause climate change to happen and to take action to lessen its impact. Many states, cities, countries and companies are creating Climate Action plans to better understand their current impact on the environment, to develop a plan to change behaviors, and to take action to reduce the impact on climate change. There are many ways to stop global warming and climate change but each of us must do our part!


The Game Design Prompt:

To most effectively address climate change, it’s important to design a plan that helps you identify the actions you need to take. There are both small and big actions that each of us can take every day at home, in school, at work and in our community. Design a game focused around the creation of your personal Climate Action Plan. Create a fun way to have your plan come to life through your everyday actions while teaching the many ways to address climate action and make the world a better place.


SDG Connection:

Being a Climate Action Hero would most closely align with Development Goal #13: Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts.


The people who are the least responsible for climate change are the most impacted by it (Ex: the global south, indigenous peoples, young children)

The primary source of climate change is the fossil fuels industry with deforestation as a close second

According to NASA, the overall global temperature has increased by 33.83° Fahrenheit since 1880

It has been more than 4 million years since we have reached our current carbon dioxide levels

Nature-based climate solutions only receive 3% of climate funding despite being one of the most effective ways of combating climate change


A climate action plan is a strategic document that outlines a collection of measures and policies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and actively address climate challenges. Things like creating solar grids, stormwater management, and preventative measures can all be part of a climate action plan. CAPs are essential for local governments to tackle climate change, and they work best when the community is involved. There are 3 ways to do this:

  1. Outreach: People want to know how climate change directly affects them and their town or city. Give people the facts. Tell them about extreme weather patterns, economic issues, and local plants and wildlife. Distribute flyers, hold an info session at your town hall, or start a newsletter. 
  2. Get Feedback: Send a survey to your neighbors with your ideas for a greener community to see what changes they’re most interested in making.
  3. Brainstorm Together: You don’t have to do it alone! Get together with your neighbors and let everyone’s ideas be heard. Make sure that your CAP meets the unique needs of your community.

Effective CAPs include four key components: emissions neutrality, governance and collaboration, resilience to climate hazards, and inclusivity and benefits.

When it comes to fighting climate change, things can seem hopeless, and so much bigger than we can even comprehend. But taking action works! Here are some things people can and have done that we know works to help save the planet.


  • Investing in Conservation: While it may take a little while to see results, the world benefits from conservation spending.
  • Finding Joy in Climate ActionWhat are you good at? What is the work that needs doing? And what brings you joy? Use your own set of strengths and interests to fight climate change your way.
  • Using Solar Power: Solar power isn’t just green; it’s durable! This climate-friendly energy alternative can make our communities more resilient.
  • Regrowing Native Plants: Restore nature by planting trees, pollinator gardens, and crops that don’t require more resources than what is available. Take advantage of vacant spaces and grow native plants that are well-suited for that space.
  • How to Save a Planet

 As famed American historian Howard Zinn said:

“Revolutionary change does not come as one cataclysmic moment (beware of such moments!) but as an endless succession of surprises, moving zigzag toward a more decent society. We don’t have to engage in grand, heroic actions to participate in the process of change. Small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can transform the world.”The Optimism of Uncertainty, The Nation, 2004

  • The Lazy Person’s Guide to Saving the World – Everyone in this world is part of the solution. There are some super easy things we can adopt into our routines that, if we all do it, will make a big difference. Take a look at this article to see what you can do at work or school, outside your house, and even right from your couch.
  • Act Now | United Nations – Here are some steps on how you can Act Now to help combat climate change!
  • 18 Simple Things You Can Do About Climate Change – 18 ways you, your friends, your family, your neighbors (anyone!) can do personally to help minimize your impact on the environment.
  • Be a Water Saver | AMNH. A checklist for steps you can take to help conserve water

Climate Change is an incredibly daunting and pressing issue we all face. But we don’t have to face it alone. These are a few organizations that dedicate themselves to fighting climate change on a collective level.


Classroom Brainstorm (20 min)

Objective: To simulate and prototype a community climate action plan.



  1. (2 min) Tell students that they are going to brainstorm their very own climate action plans in small groups. Explain that each group should start by thinking about 2 or 3 issues that their plan will address (ex: transportation, renewable energy, air quality) and come up with climate-friendly resolutions. Let them know that groups will be encouraged to briefly share their strategies at the end of the exercise. 
  2. (20 min) Break students into small groups of 3-5. Each group is its own community and should come up with its own ideas to resolve local issues. Let students discuss their ideas amongst themselves.
  3. (5 min) Ask for volunteers to give a brief overview of their plan and what community issues were important to them. 
  4. (5 min) Ask: did everyone in your group have the same ideas or different ones? How was your group able to decide on the issues that were most important to them?

UNESCO’s Climate Change Activity (60 min)

Objective: To learn more about each other through sharing personal experiences, knowledge, and feelings concerning climate change. 


Start (5 min)

Play a short video showing why climate change education is important to shape sustainable development and how it works in practice. It shows how education can help us understand the causes of climate change. It also gives examples of how teachers and students can get active and address the challenges of climate change. This can be done on a large screen, computer screens, or group together to watch on a mobile phone or tablet.


Climate Change People Search (25 min)

Give every student a copy of appendix 1. Invite students to move around the classroom and join up with someone who can respond in a positive way to one of the items in the handout. Ask them to write the name of the person into the space on the sheet and ask questions of their partner so as to encourage sharing of detail of their experiences and/or feelings. Let the group know that they can only have one positive response from any one person. They must move on to other people to fill in other lines on the handout. Encourage them to complete as much of the handout as possible in the time available but without rushing so they benefit from listening to each other’s stories.


Discussion (20 min)

Lead the group in discussion and reflection on stories they have encountered and write the group’s questions about climate change on the flip chart or board.

Possible discussion questions:

  • Did you learn anything from anybody that really surprised you?
  • Did you find you had experiences in common with others?
  • What were those experiences?
  • What feelings were commonly expressed?
  • Did you argue? About what?
  • What has the activity shown that we know about climate change?
  • What has it shown that we don’t know or are uncertain about?
  • What questions has it raised in your mind?


Closing (5 min)

To end the lesson, students quickly summarize their collective feelings about climate change, and what as a class they could do about it.