Skip to main content

Webinar: Climate & Storytelling

This hour long webinar will discuss connecting climate change information to communities through storytelling and interdisciplinary approaches.

TITLE: How to Build Data Literacy Skills in your Climate Change Program
PRESENTER: Janice McDonnell (Rutgers)

Data literacy has become an in-demand skill for our future workforce to navigate tough decision making as we adapt to the climate crisis. As New Jersey the first state to adopt climate literacy standards, what are our obligations of Cooperative Extension to support learning about climate change? What partnerships are needed to support climate adaptation and resilience? In this workshop, Janice McDonnell will share experiences developing Data to the Rescue, Penguins Need our Help, an out-of-school time program to teach data skills and climate change solutions. She will share lessons learned about how to integrate data literacy skills and climate science solutions discussions in learning environments including tips for including social emotional learning practices.

TITLE: Interdisciplinary Approaches to Discussing Climate Change
PRESENTER: James Shope (Rutgers)

Connecting stakeholders and students to climate change information can be difficult and often climate data may feel abstract to the audience. What are some methods to make climate change information more relevant and connected to our local communities? In this presentation, James Shope will present activities developed for k-12 educator training that contextualizes climate information from different perspectives such as art and environmental justice to help connect students and communities locally relevant issues and solutions for climate resilience.

Story Map example: redlining and the urban heat island:

Data Visualization & Mapping Tool example: putting climate data into a more local context:

TITLE: Climate Change STEM Education for Tribal Youth

As a part of an NSF grant to reach underserved audiences with climate change education. One of the climate change teaching venues is a public tribal charter school setting. Speaking with Athabascan Indian Elders about what is important for tribal youth to know about climate change, as well as utilizing a national Cooperative Extension curriculum on the topic, classes are guided which cover various science dynamics that are tied to worldwide and regional climate variation. This webinar will describe the teaching process used thus far.

*Note. This talk by Art Nash will not be recorded.


Dr. James Shope is an assistant extension specialist in climate services with the New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station and the Department of Environmental Sciences at Rutgers University. His work addresses a wide range of climate change impacts and adaptation strategies in New Jersey. In particular, he is interested in how agricultural production, municipal planning, and public health will respond to a warming climate, heavier rainfall, and more frequent flooding. James frequently engages in outreach efforts across New Jersey, including leading resiliency tool trainings, co-authoring public-facing reports, providing climate science resources for k-12 educators, and sharing actionable scientific resources for community planners.

Janice McDonnell is the STEM Agent in the Department of 4-H Youth Development at Rutgers University where she focuses on developing and implementing high quality STEM programs and resources for young people.  She focuses on facilitating hands-on projects where youth receive guidance from adult mentors and are encouraged to build their data literacy by taking on proactive leadership roles in environmental decision making.

Art Nash began working with tribal youth of several reservations nearly 40 years ago and since has taught students as youth group leader, middle school teacher, Title I (remedial math and reading) teacher, interim principal, social (services) worker, and as associate energy professor. Incorporating local, native knowledge with academic data driven info, Art engages youth discovery thru the environmental and social sciences so that they can critically assess/adapt to the world around them and the rapid changes it is going through.


Who Is Attending

Add Comment

Comments (0)


About the Extension Foundation

The Extension Foundation was formed in 2006 by Extension Directors and Administrators. Today, the Foundation partners with Cooperative Extension through liaison roles and a formal plan of work with the Extension Committee on Organization and Policy (ECOP) to increase system capacity while providing programmatic services, and helping Extension programs scale and investigate new methods and models for implementing programs. The Foundation provides professional development to Cooperative Extension professionals and offers exclusive services to its members. In 2020 and 2021, the Extension Foundation has awarded 85% of its direct funding back to the Cooperative Extension System, 100% of funds are used to support Cooperative Extension initiatives. 

This technology is supported in part by New Technologies for Ag Extension (funding opportunity no. USDA-NIFA-OP-010186), grant no. 2023-41595-41325 from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or the Extension Foundation. For more information, please visit You can view the terms of useat

Link copied to your clipboard.