The Project

Reimagining social studies and history education in response to climate crisis

Considering the massive changes our society must undertake to mitigate and respond to climate change, our education system must likewise reconsider how to prepare youth well for this uncertain future. The Social Studies & History Education in the Anthropocene Network (SSHEAN) is dedicated to rethinking social studies and history education to address climate change and its associated ecological, economic, political, and social challenges.

We aim to support communication and collaboration between teachers and researchers in fields including social studies/history education, citizenship education, environmental history, environmental education, and Indigenous studies. Together, we can better prepare young people in Canada with the knowledges, skills, attitudes, and relationships relevant to facing environmental crisis now and in the future.

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Heather McGregor shares how SSHEAN came about in a podcast with FookNConversation

We are living in the Anthropocene…

an epoch defined by the dominant influence of humans on the planet, causing unprecedented geological change in a short period of time.


“the story we tell ourselves about environmental crises, the story of humanity’s place on the earth and its presence within geological time determines how we understand how we got here, where we might like to be headed, and what we need to do” (Davis & Todd, 2017, p. 764).

Who SSHEAN is trying to reach

We invite engagement and participation from researchers and practising teachers who are interested in improving how schools educate for the Anthropocene. Our research, lesson plans, and other resources have been developed with you in mind!

SSHRC Insight Development Grant (2021-2023)

Teaching the Past to Prepare for the Future: Social Studies and History Education in the Anthropocene

Heather E. McGregor, Principal Investigator

This research project explores the present and potential contributions of Ontario social studies and history education (SSHE) as a school subject to learning experiences that prepare youth for the Anthropocene. The project is informed by Ontario Ministry of Education curricula, as well as the experiences and perspectives of researcher-teacher educators and practising teachers, all of whom are positioned as holding important expertise in identifying opportunities, challenges and potential new directions.

Research Goals & Objectives

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