Our impact

Through education, Ripple Effect defines a positive and compelling vision for the future. Small, yet powerful, moments of learning add up to large-scale societal change.

  • Ripple Effect reimagines science classrooms as a place for K-12 students to engage directly with the most immediate and urgent questions of resilience and adaptation.
  • Ripple Effect develops curricula and programs that challenge teachers to move students from awareness to action and stewardship.
  • Students practice stewardship during the course of the unit, which sets them up to become water literate leaders and advocates for our most climate-vulnerable communities.
  • Students learn about water in their own environment—from the schoolyard to nearby natural systems—through place-based learning experiences that help forge a confidence and positive relationship to water.
  • Family and community events celebrate student learning, jumpstart climate conversation between parents and kids, and build a sense of resilience and civic responsibility.

Student achievement

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.
  • 75% of Ripple Effect students exhibited mastery on NGSS-aligned end-of-unit assessments.

Stewardship mindsets

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 classrooms show a positive shift with more students exhibiting stewardship-like mindset than before their Ripple Effect experience.

Teacher 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:

  1. By inviting family members to classrooms to share their own stories about water, flooding, severe weather, and climate change.
  2. 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.