The 2020-21 Stories Project curriculum includes 10 Lessons + 5 Bonus Lessons.  Each lesson includes a PDF lesson plan, Google slides, media and short films, science/writing/activity extensions, and more.

Click the lesson image or lesson title for lesson folders with all materials (lessons and bonus lessons will be released across October/November).  Lesson One is now available.


Lesson One – Wisdom and Wonder: a foundation for justice

Introduces students to The Redford Stories Project as a journey of learning and discovery to connect with the natural world, ourselves and each other, and bring health to our planet and communities. Students experience ways words and images direct/inspire attention, and begin to consider their own visions + voices for a more just, hopeful, healthy world.

Lesson Two – EarthRise: awakening hope for the future

The oldest human tradition is to share stories to better understand ourselves and the world around us from new points of view.  How have people tried to explore, describe, map, calculate, and express their “environment”; and what is it to be “an environmentalist”?  What stories and unique points of view are most needed now?

Lesson Three – The Sea Around Us (Life and Reciprocity, part 1)

This lesson explores our relationship to water?  Students are invited to think deeply about how water impacts conditions for life and health–for the planet and people.  Water is the Earth’s first resource, and connects us all.  Who is thinking about environmental justice, protection and repair with respect to water and, more specifically, the health of the ocean? 

Lesson Four “Home”: the Emergent Design of the Earth (Chemistry)

 The substance and makeup of the planet has created the conditions for humans and many species to emerge, or blossom forth.  What are the conditions for emergence and thriving (scientifically and interpersonally)?  This lesson gives students opportunities to ask, How do we come to know this home in deeper ways, and why does it matter?

Lesson Five – Blue Skies, Tuning to the Trees and Breathing (Reciprocity Part 2)

What have people across history understood/learned from how they’ve inhabited land and experienced forests and trees?  As scientists newly reveal the communication systems of trees (sophisticated beyond human invention), what can we learn?  What’s happening to forests/national parks; with what impact to biodiversity, communities, human imagination?  

Lesson Six –  Light and the 1st Law of Thermodynamics: Seeing

What can our relationship to “non-renewable”/“renewable” energy show us about how we are, and could be, living; and who is most impacted by decisions about energy use? With different ways of investigating these questions, students consider fossil fuels, impacts of energy use, and what innovations exist (or could exist) to re-create our relationship to energy.

Lesson Seven – Gravitational Echoes/Waves (sound/light/action): Hearing

Recently, scientists were able to confirm one of Einstein’s theories with the measurable discovery of “gravitational echoes” – sound waves ripple across time/space without end. If every sound is patterning the air we breathe, how do we want to speak of/to the Earth and each other? What about sound/light/air pollution, health, animal navigation… toward what do we listen and hear?

Lesson Eight – Soil: Feeling

What conditions have depleted Earth’s soil; with what impact?  What are innovations in urban farming, local farming, gleaning, regenerative agriculture, microorganisms, compost, mushrooms, food systems, able to teach us about seeking and cultivating diversity and a richer story?  What can we do to balance and regenerate our soil and communities?

Lesson Nine – Generative Systems

Around the world, young people are raising their visions/voices for justice, protection and repair.  How are the rights of nature, and all beings, newly coming into public dialogue?  Amidst rollback of fundamental environmental protections, what can citizens do?  This lesson dives deeper into advocacy, and the role of art, literature, music, expression, science in deep change. 

Lesson Ten – Design Like Nature (generative systems & Reciprocity Part 3)

What can inspire us all to live in greater reciprocity?  When we create a story, invent something new, design a city/building/food system/way of sharing resources, are we thinking about both immediate and long-term impacts?  This lesson brings students into these inquiries, and helps students think about the ripple of projects they are inspired to create.