As I compose this blog post, a disquieting reality is emerging: record-breaking temperatures are soaring to unprecedented heights, thrusting the world into the clutches of dire repercussions. Touristy sites, once characterized by pleasant temperatures, have now morphed into a relentless battleground against climate crises. The recent heat waves in Southern Europe and Northern Africa as well as the wildfires in Canada and on Hawaii stand as an unequivocal reminder that climate change represents a serious threat needing immediate and collective action.
In light of these alarming circumstances, the significance of sustainability education becomes all the more apparent in raising awareness and equipping future generations with the necessary knowledge and skills to combat climate change’s escalating tolls.
When I started studying at Leuphana University Lüneburg, I eventually went into the library and couldn’t help notice the quote by Thomas Jefferson on the library staircase. The words and possible meanings were resonating with me. By studying here, I imagined, I can create a better future. No matter how dark the past is, we can make the future brighter.
Now that a few semesters have passed, I recently started to question the quote. By only looking into the future, don’t we neglect the past? What kind of quote is this to put in a library, which basically consists of works of the past? Is there a deeper meaning to why a quote by Thomas Jefferson was chosen? And is it suitable to put his words on our walls? What else is there to know about Jefferson and his dreams for the future? Read more »
Christmas and New Year’s Eve are over. Now it’s already February, but Valentine’s Day is not really your thing? Worry not! National Bird-Feeding Month has arrived.
It’s just the right time of the year to provide our feathered friends with food and water in our backyards, then sit in front of the window to watch them. It’s a great delight to see them feast on seeds. You can get in touch with nature, take a moment to relax, and help the environment. It’s also cheap, and kids will have a lot of fun learning the different birds’ names.
You’re not familiar with the A and O of bird-feeding yet? Don’t worry about this either – I’ve been feeding birds in my yard for years. Let me feed you the most important titbits you need to know to participate!
It’s that time of year again. February 1 marks the beginning of Black History Month. Before I suggest some useful resources, let’s briefly look at its origins.
Fact 1: The United States is not the only country to officially celebrate it. In addition to our neighbors to the North, who also celebrate this time of remembrance in February, the Irish and the United Kingdom observe Black History Month in October.
Fact 2: The roots of Black History Month in the U.S. can be traced back to historian Carter G. Woodson and the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History, who together marked the second week of February – which coincides with Abraham Lincoln’s birthday – as Negro history week in 1926.
Fact 3: Even the Great Emancipator had his failures, and so it’s undoubtedly best that in 1969 students at Kent State moved to celebrate the contributions and culture of Black Americans for an entire month, instead of placing President Lincoln, who upheld the mass public hanging of 38 Dakota Sioux on December 26, 1862, in the center of their celebrations.
So, if your school has never celebrated Black History Month before, it’s never too late to get on that ‘soul train’. And since we didn’t want to leave you in the lurch, we’ve provided a list of some suitable blogs we’ve published over the years on subjects, ranging from cultural icons, such as Aretha Franklin, Don Cornelius, and Beyoncé, to best books and fabulous films dealing with Black identity and history. You’ll also find information on some current controversies:
“It is my honor to be here, to stand on the shoulders of those who came before,” Kamala Harris, the first female, the first black, the first Asian American Vice-President of the U.S.A. proudly said in her first address to the nation on inauguration day. Her tone is optimistic, her goals are ambitious, and her energy seems unlimited.
It is true, we all are standing on the shoulders of those who came before, all the women who prepared the way for our progress, our achievements. And there has been quite a bit of progress as Carol Dyhouse, a social historian at the University of Sussex, describes in her new book, Love Lives: From Cinderella to Frozen. The title is a bit misleading. Though myths, fairy tales, and popular culture tropes still influence us, Dyhouse outlines how women in the western world have abandoned the restrictions of domestic life since the 1950s and gradually, though often painfully, have claimed access to education and the professional world. A long path it has been to self-determination and economic independence.
But even now the question remains: Have we made enough progress? Because I do worry about “my girls” these days, as Michelle Obama describes them. I worry about “my boys,” too, but this is a blog post to remind ourselves of International Women’s Day and Women’s History Month. Both encourage us to reflect on those who came before, but also on those to whom we pass the baton, whose legs we steady on our shoulders.
At the dinner table, on the train, or at work, we witness discriminatory language or racist remarks from time to time. We often know that we should say something, but we – for one reason or another – do not always get involved. Many people would like to do more but don’t always know how. Dr. Nancy Dome, who has worked with children and educators for over 20 years, has literally made that quandary both her business and mission. This week’s blog features an interview with the CEO of Epoch Education about fostering the understanding of diversity and the development of inclusive cultures.