a man stands on top of a rock formation and reaches out to help a woman who is climbing the rock

ClimateSocrates Press Release

By: SubjectToClimate Team

Jan 9, 2023 | 3 minute read

SubjectToClimate has partnered with MIT’s Environmental Solutions Initiative to create a help desk called “ClimateSocrates.”

Dec 2, 2022 -  SubjectToClimate’s ClimateSocrates Help Desk provides teachers with supplementary sources on climate change topics and pedagogical strategies directly from the resource or lesson plan page they are viewing. This tool will enhance SubjectToClimate's resources so that teachers will feel even more confident and better equipped to teach about climate change in their classrooms. 

Climate change can be a challenging topic to teach for many reasons: explanations of its causes and impacts can be highly technical, it is rarely addressed in teacher education programs, and information on climate change is updated frequently. ClimateSocrates Help Desk is an interactive support center that offers up to date information about climate science and pedagogical strategies. The content provided in the chatbot interaction will address common foundational questions on climate change so that teachers feel ready to teach the topic and answer their students’ questions in class. 

Educators can find information about climate change topics by searching help center articles directly in the ClimateSocrates Help Desk. Answers provided about climate science are republished from the MIT Climate Portal, a product of the MIT Environmental Solutions Initiative, which hosts over 85 climate science articles written in collaboration with MIT faculty, scientists, and experts. Answers provided to pedagogical strategy questions are written by StC teacher taskforce and content management team members.

“At MIT, we have access to expert, up-to-minute information on all aspects of climate science,” says Aaron Krol, Communications Coordinator at the MIT Environmental Solutions Initiative. “We have a responsibility to share that knowledge with those—like teachers—who need it most, in ways that are easy to find, understand and build on.”

The ClimateSocrates Help Desk supports teachers by providing relevant help articles that give background information on climate change topics (e.g., wildfires, agriculture) and pedagogical strategy articles (e.g., inquiry-based learning, place-based learning) within seconds of typing in a keyword search.  

For further information about SubjectToClimate, contact margaret.wang@subjecttoclimate.org

SubjectToClimate is a nonprofit online connector for K-12 leaders of all subjects to find credible, unbiased, and engaging materials on climate change at no cost. 

MIT Environmental Solutions Initiative MIT’s Environmental Solutions Initiative mobilizes the substantial scientific, engineering, policy, and design capacity of MIT to create solutions to today’s environmental challenges through diverse activities in education, research, and convening. ESI manages the MIT Climate Portal.