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Pledging for Change

Originally appears in the Summer 2017 issue

How often have we heard that one person can change the world? Mahatma Gandhi said to “Be the change that you wish to see in the world,” but realistically, how can one person make a difference? With over 7 billion people on the planet, won’t one change in one person’s lifestyle, be just a drop in the bucket?

Inspiring students to recognize the interconnection between their actions and effects on the rest of the world and society can be a monumental task as it requires individual sacrifice. The Student Pledge of Sustainable Change (SPSC) lesson plan is a way to stimulate students to make a pledge changing one action to something more sustainable. Ask high school students to choose a personal habit related to sustainability in which they think they would be able to make a small change. Then ask them to research how implementing this change over time will collectively make a marked difference in the world.

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Heidi Paul currently teaches at Magnificat High School in Rocky River, Ohio, and developed this lesson plan as part of her graduate work with Project Dragonfly at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. She would like to thank her department for candidly reviewing this article and her students for implementing their pledges.

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