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 (or see Master Folder). And click HERE for an updating Curricular Map/Overview.


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 gather together to share stories to better understand ourselves and the world.  Over 50 years after Apollo 8 and the iconic Earthrise photo, what new perspectives are needed now?  How can we redefine who is an “environmentalist”; and in ways that honor, uplift and amplify underrepresented communities, visions and voices?

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

This lesson explores our relationship to waterStudents are invited to think deeply about how water impacts conditions for life and health–for the planet and people.  How does the history, science and story of water connect us all?  How is ocean health connected to community health, and who is thinking about environmental justice, protection and repair with respect to the ocean?

Lesson Four  A Water Story (Life and Reciprocity, part 2)

The preciousness of water cannot be overstated.  While water covers the Earth, only a tiny percentage of the Earth’s water is available for human use and consumption.  The United Nations identifies water as a human right and necessity for health, as well as the preservation and cultivation of human dignity.  Who is most impacted by declining access to clean water?

Lesson Five – Shared Land & Tuning to the Trees (Life and Reciprocity, part 3)

As hidden, communal qualities of trees/forests are being newly discovered, so is the importance of communion with nature for human health.  For whom is it easy to access nature, and for whom it is difficult or unwelcoming?  Amidst the pandemic, it’s common to hear “nature is still open”, but is it?  How can nature be a shared space of nourishment, thriving, mutuality?

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, what innovations exist (or could exist), and who are in “frontline communities”?

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

Recently, scientists confirmed one of Einstein’s theories with the measurable discovery of “gravitational echoes”: waves of all kinds ripple in time/space without end.  When a decision is made in a community, which ripples/impacts are considered.  Who gets to speak for a community?  What about sound/light/air pollution –who’s most impacted, at what cost?

Lesson Eight – Active Citizenship and Rising Community

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 Nine – Soil: Feeling

What conditions have depleted Earth’s soil; with what impact?  What are innovations in urban and local farming, regenerative agriculture and 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, and what is the role of biodiversity in thriving systems at all levels?

Lesson Ten – Generative and Just Systems, Building Forward

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.