Changemaker High School students are taught the Arizona Academic Standards for high school through a lens of sustainability in order to increase their critical thinking, place-based understanding, and environmental consciousness. The idea is to enhance students’ perceptions, attitudes, and behaviors toward the earth and realize that they can make a difference for their own generation and those to come. Our urban agriculture and science courses teach students soil and water science, methods for composting, repurposing, reusing, water harvesting, gardening with native seeds, raising and caring for chickens, climate change and more. In addition, our math and English courses teach students how to change their habits as consumers in our economy from learning how to shop for locally grown foods and budgeting to easy substitutions to enhance their nutrition.
Students engage with community members and agencies who are working to address climate change and have learned that there is an urgency to do something about it. They have come up with their own projects and joined others in their efforts to support this effort. There is a strong sense of responsibility for each other and our environment embedded into the culture of our school.