Walden Climate-Change Curriculum

Walden Climate Change Patch

Inspired by Henry David Thoreau’s environmental and political philosophy, the Walden Climate-Change Curriculum (WCCC) brings UMass Lowell faculty, college students, environmental activists, and the general public together to advance climate literacy across our region.  Partnering with the Thoreau Society and the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR), we won a seed grant from UMass to create a virtual “classroom in the woods,” a digital platform that features place-based pages that show how climate change is affecting historic landscapes and public lands across Massachusetts.  

Now, having developed the technical infrastructure for our project, we are writing grants and seeking donations so that we can begin to stage climate-literacy workshops at the many state parks and heritage areas that will be included on the WCCC web site.  Led by faculty and external experts involved in UMass Lowell’s Climate Change Initiative (CCI), these workshops will utilize our virtual classroom to train teachers, friends groups, Thoreau Society members, college students, and community activists to educate park visitors about the impacts of climate change on local heritage areas, nature preserves, and urban ecosystems. To maximize public awareness of our project, we will begin at Walden Pond, the place where Thoreau first defined environmental stewardship as an American ideal.

As we implement this long-term educational initiative, we hope to leverage the expertise and dedication of the many government agencies, public and private foundations, and academic and advocacy groups that are working to promote responsible climate-change policy within and beyond Massachusetts: 

Mass environmental organizations