Climate change is complex, and the U.N.’s most recent climate report is thousands of pages long. So reading and understanding the science can seem overwhelming.
But a French organization has found a way to help people learn the main points in just three hours by playing a collaborative game.
“It’s for all ages, all kinds of groups,” says Sheila Suarez de Flores, a facilitator and co-coordinator for Climate Fresk U.S.A.
Climate Fresk is a group workshop built around a card game. The cards represent and summarize concepts like agriculture, CO2, rising temperatures, and climate refugees.
The facilitator helps players understand the concepts and asks them to explain what they’ve learned in their own words.
Working together, players arrange the cards to show cause and effect. Often, the game is played on a sheet of paper and players draw arrows and diagrams.
And at the end, players make their game board into art.
“They decorate it, and they move from the head to the heart and talk about their emotions and what they learned,” de Flores says.
So far, almost half a million people have played either in person or online.
“There’s quite a bit of a group bonding experience, a cathartic experience,” de Flores says. “It’s all about creating a safe space for these climate conversations that we know are so important.”
Reporting credit: Stephanie Manuzak/ChavoBart Digital Media and Molly Matthews Multedo