Part I: Introduction
In this unit of study, we learned about climate change. First, we started off by watching a documentary about the climate rally that happened in New York. We got to hear from officials, scientists, and just everyday people speaking out about what it is and what the rally would do. One thing we learned were that carbon dioxide plays a major role in the change of our global climate. We also learned about the impacts it had on some communities and towns, like the typhoon that happened in the Philippines. After we watched this documentary, we got to listen to a sample monologue, and learned ways that we could make our own monologues interesting and thoughtful. Finally, we created, revised, and even performed our monologues in class!
Part II: The Monologues
Monologue #1: John Appleseed’s Asparagus Farm- Tragedy of the Drought
Honey...yes, I know, the farm didn’t bring in much money this week. I don’t know what else to do. There’s just not enough water for the crops. (Looking stressed out, he slumps down into a chair by the Kitchen table). Half of the asparagus field’s already gone dry. Get more water? From where?! I can’t just scream at the sky to give us rain, Lisa. It doesn’t work like that. Well I’m not God, so. Look, I don’t understand it either. They’re saying it’s something about climate change...the scientists. What do you mean “What does a drought have to do with climate change?” ? It’s got everything to do with climate change! The weather changed, and it’s been like this for awhile now. Keeps getting worse. So the climate, changed! Geez. I’m sorry..I know you were just asking. Just seemed pretty obvious. Well I don’t know what they’re gonna do about it. We’re over here auctioning off water. Water!! $1,350 an acre-foot! Remember when it used to be $135. Times are crazy. At this rate, next month I don’t know how we’re gonna survive. I don’t. How’re we gonna pay the- oh hey sweetiepie! How was school? Now why are you pouting? No pouting. Here, I think I’ve got something to cheer you up. (Hands her a watercolor painting of a sunflower.) I painted it last night. Just for you. (Her face lights up, and she jumps up to give him a hug. She thanks him for the painting and goes up to her room.) How sweet is that. Yeah, I know I shouldn’t be using the water. It was only a cupful. There may not be enough water for the crops, but I’d give it all to my sunshine if I could. Look, I don’t know what we’re gonna do about this. I’ll make some calls, see if I can get us into an auction or something. Bill’s probably got someone I could talk to, or Annie.
Monologue #2: Ralph McKelly: Coal Keeps the Bills Paid
Hello everybody...(waves) hey Janice! Bert, how’s my boy doing? Hey y’all, alright now settle down! My name is Ralph McKelly, as most of you may already know. I used to work at the Eastern Kentucky Coal Mining industry, along with a handful of other faces in the crowd. Yes, used to. I know, I know, it’s a shame. It’s a damn shame. See, Washington don’t care about us anymore...no. With their EPAs and regulations. You know what I think of the EPA? The “Environmental Protection Agency?” I think that they’re full of it. Talkin’ about regulations. They don’t got one good reason to shut these coal mines down. They don’t got no proof! This is God’s land, He gave us coal, so we burn it! Y’know, one of my favorite songs, “Coal Keeps the Lights on,” by Jimmy Rose...yep, him! Well, it says, “They don't care that much about the little man or the calloused hands. It's a way of life 'round, just like it's always been.” And I just think that that is so powerful. Coal has always, always, been a way of living ‘round here. It, “keeps food on the spoon in my youngin’s mouth.” My daughter, she’s grown now, but we got people like Bert here. His daughter’s five. He just got laid off from the mines too. Just this July. And like me, mining’s been his entire life! I remember when my dad brought me down to the mines, first time. I was nine. The black ash, smoke reaching out to the sky- it fascinated me. And so, I’ve been there ever since. So now, we’ve gotta figure out what we’re gonna do from here. Are y’all with me! Okay!
Monologue #3: Brenda Ekwurzel: Life of a Scientist
(Extending her arm to the far left corner of her desk, she answers the ringing phone). Dr. Brenda Ekwurzel, senior climate scientist at the Union of Concerned Scientists. Oh hello Jill!...So I’ve heard...It’s frustrating, yes. I agree, all of these rallies against the EPA have to be countered. Ah, so you’ve seen my blog post on carbon emissions! Well the amount of carbon dioxide in the air right now is quite alarming. You know, I’d be willing to hold one of these countering rallies for your organization, to spread actual knowledge about this issue to others. Oh, you were just about to ask me that! Haha, well you know I’d stand up for the EPA any day. So, it’s a done deal. Oh, nothing much is going on right now. Lot of work. Oh, he’s good. He just got a promotion at work! Yeah, I’m so proud of him. He’s been working for this for awhile now. The cats are good, yes. Haha, MInnie is turning seven this year! February…yes come in and visit! You know we always like visitors. Yeah, the guest room’s all refinished as well! We added that on-suite, you saw the pictures, right? It’s always good to change things up a bit, you know? Well how are you holding up, I know the divorce must have been tough on you...yeah...yeah, I can imagine. Well I’m glad you’re doing well now, Jill. We’ll have to catch up more soon! I’ve got some more research to get done now, so I’ll have to catch you later. Alright, keep me updated on this rally! Goodbye!