This lesson plan connects intergenerational justice with the federal budget.
Step 1 - Inquire: Students watch a TED video by Roman Krznaric called “How to Be a Good Ancestor." It allows students to see sustainability from a future perspective.
Step 2 - Investigate: Students explore usaspending.gov and examine spending by federal agency in the fiscal year 2022. In groups, students design a budget for the federal government. Some students represent people living now while other students represent people living seven generations in the future.
Step 3 - Inspire: Students reflect on what it feels like to represent those living now and those living seven generations in the future. Finally, students share, comment, and deepen each other’s ideas and opinions.
This lesson asks students to analyze how the U.S. federal government splits its budget amongst all of the federal agencies. The website used to track the spending is routinely updated. This lesson has passed the scientist quality assessment.