Recipes for the Future
Who is this for?
We are creating this activity for elementary and early junior high students.
Where do I find the activity materials?
You can download a printable PDF or an editable PPT
Why are we sharing this activity?
We believe that the ability to imagine, engage with, and reason about the future of society is a critical but oft-ignored skill. The process of envisioning futures requires imagination, which children already have plenty of – all they need is a little structure or prompt.
What’s the broader purpose here?
When we think of the future, we inherently reveal our opinions, fears, and hopes about our present reality. Our children are no different – if we give them the space to create their own vision of the future, it also lets them evaluate the present to pick and choose the trends which they think will greatly impact the future.
In the past, kids who have done this activity created images around climate, sustainability, and food equity – not necessarily by conscious decision, but simply based on their value judgments of today’s world. We believe this is a critical skill to foster.
How can this align with educational standards?
Through this activity, students learn to take their ideas and opinions and shape them into a communicable form, via both visual and written mediums. They will be expressing a vision on how they imagine the future – and then providing anecdotes and rhetoric to back up this vision. These skills are closely linked with typical language arts and writing standards.
Additionally, this activity provides the space for teachers to integrate discussion of sustainability, climate, and areas of science related to agriculture and food production. Use this activity as a jumping-off point to engage students in a discussion of how they view the present world and how they imagine it a few decades from now.