Since 2012, Ripple Effect has worked with over 30 teachers in the Greater New Orleans area and has engaged over 1,000 students in multi-day science classes. In total, we have provided over 10,000 hours of science instructional time to students across New Orleans, and piloted new forms of parent and community engagement.
All units and student assessments are designed to meet the three-dimensional nature of Next Generation Science Standards. In order to reach our goal of every classroom meeting or exceeding 80% or higher in student mastery, Ripple Effect works with teachers before and during the unit to to analyze student work samples, create exemplars, and anticipate and respond to student misconceptions.
- Measured through end-of-unit assessments, mid-unit assessments and classroom observations.
- In spring 2018, 75% of Ripple Effect students exhibited mastery on NGSS-aligned end-of-unit assessments.
Ripple Effect defines stewardship as having the knowledge, creativity, and empathy needed to identify and help solve major environmental problems. We believe successful adaptation to climate change must be a collective, community-based endeavor. Our goal is that every student will exhibit a positive shift toward a stewardship mindset as a result of taking part in Ripple Effect.
- Before and after a Ripple Effect unit, we measure every student’s attitude about his or her belief in their ability to create change in the face of urgent, large scale environmental problems.
- All 2018 classrooms show a positive shift with more students exhibiting stewardship-like mindset than before their Ripple Effect experience.
Ripple Effect curriculum and teacher training are designed to help teachers envision what students are investigating, how students are observing, and what work students are producing to prove what they know. To that end, by focusing teacher training on what to expect from students, we can better prepare teachers to deliver highly effective instruction.
- Ripple Effect monitors teacher attitudes, questions, and performance after the initial workshop, during the actual unit implementation, and after the unit has taken place.
- 100% of teachers have said they were likely or very likely to recommend Ripple Effect to another teacher
Family and community engagement
Ripple Effect approaches family engagement in two ways:
- By inviting family members to classrooms to share their own stories about water, flooding, severe weather, and climate change.
- By publicly celebrating student learning and asking students to become teachers in their communities.
Our strategy is to provide platforms that bring forward student and parent experiences. In doing so, we forge stronger connections with the communities we serve and help students understand that what they are learning in class is critically connected to protecting the lives and wellbeing of their own families.
- Bi-annually, Family Bayou Day brings over 200 community members out to Bayou St. John for a day of canoeing, scientific exploration, boat-building, and artwork.
- Ripple Effect initiated the KIPP Central City Primary schoolyard redesign project. The team raised over $160,000. The result is an inspiring and fun landscape that captures the first half inch of rain that falls on the school courtyard.
- Ripple Effect contributed to the development of New Orleans’s first resilience strategy, which includes environmental education among three categories of resilience-building actions for the city and its partners.