Eighth-grade students at Brooklyn Dreams Charter School recently participated in New York City’s Youth Climate Strike. The strike was held in September, ahead of the United Nations Climate Action Summit.
Teachers, Pam Texada, middle school social studies teacher at Brooklyn Dreams, and Peter Pekalski, eighth-grade science teacher at Brooklyn Dreams, accompanied 35 eighth-graders to the strike by foot. During the trip, students walked across the Brooklyn Bridge and into City Hall.
When students reached the strike, they were greeted by thousands of other New York students who were chanting “what do we want?” and others echoing a response of “climate justice!”. Brooklyn Dreams students immediately joined in, chanting back "climate justice".
“The highlight of the strike was when one of our scholars had an epiphany during a silent moment,” said Omar Thomas, principal of Brooklyn Dreams. “She began chanting ‘what do you want?’ students replying, ‘climate justice,’ her voice getting louder and louder as hundreds of students marched alongside her, replied to her call for climate justice.”
Prior to attending the strike, students made posters to bring along, with messages including:
- “The climate is changing, why aren’t we?”
- “Stop climate change.”
- “There’s no planet B.”
- “As the oceans rise, so will we.
Brooklyn Dreams students joined nearly 300,000 other New York students who also attended the strike. This was a global effort, as students from across the world joined together to ensure their voices are being heard.
“The earth belongs to our students as well as the other millions of students all over the world,” said Thomas. “It’s the job of us as educators to make sure NHA students understand that they are truly the change agents who can change the world.”