Did Scholastics Weekly Reader Scare You? How Long Has Global Cooling Global Warning Been Touted in Schools?

A global cooling scare of  1970s? Apparently so. Which is it? Ice Age or Dustbowl? (see an important update below about the Time Mag graphic)

Global Cooling - Global Warming

Global Cooling – Global Warming

I was probably in first grade the first time Scholastic’s Weekly Reader scared me.  I had a Christian conservative teacher who made us sing “My Country Tis of Thee,” every morning and say the Pledge of Allegiance.  Her approach was no nonsense, but Weekly Reader came at least twice every month.  Between its grim predictions about the planet and push to sell books, I wasn’t sure we would be here until the next edition.   I was in first grade and was afraid of the population explosion, pollution, scarcity of resources and especially global cooling.   The adults were being scared too.  In fact Time Magazine seemed to be obsessed with global cooling. Read it all at I’m a Man, I’m 41 – excellent with resources to combat the arguments your hippy Uncle Joey throws around .

See a video with the above article from about 1977 narrated by Leonard Nimoy. The winter was so bad, a lady from Buffalo, NY thought they might need to move. Buffalo is annually in the top 10 cities with a population over 50,000 receiving the most snowfall in the U.S.  – approximately 93 inches annually. Can you guess when we were supposed to see the next great Ice Age?

But today, while the Polar Bear population is indisputably on the increase, don’t ya know that if you prick a warmist, you’ll always find a fascist?

We need to design a new kind of democracy where many government decisions are made cooperatively, with multi-party representation and the input of experts. Such think tanks must have strategies in place to promote critical self-analysis and to “frame” policy to reflect the long-term reality. The cost of climate change mitigation can then be shown to be minute compared to the cost of inaction.

William Teach has the real response based on reality to the “new kind of democracy.” Read it here.

Are you paying attention? Weekly Reader is still in classrooms. You can subscribe to a digital edition to know what is being fed to your children, and judge for yourself, here.

UPDATE March 23, 2013: A reader alerted me to the fact that the Time Mag cover from 1974 is photoshopped, allegedly. Reader artiofab links to the following which is believed to be genuine from January 1977:


It turns out the Time magazine cover “How to Survive the Coming Ice Age” is a photoshopped fake.  However, while the cover is a fake,Time was in fact printing stories about fears of global cooling in the 70’s.  See here.  And so was Newsweek. See here.  And the National Science Board.  See here.  And Science.  See here.  And several other sources summarized here.  We regret the error of putting the fake Timecover up.  However, the point we were trying to make remains valid. – Source: Uncommon Descent

  • My wife and I homeschooled our kids through the sixth grade. As such, I used to get mail from all sorts of folks who wanted to sell us textbooks, school supplies, etc.

    They sent me a complimentary copy of The Weekly Reader. I’m guessing this was late 70’s early 80’s. Some of you remember the educational map that’s been a part of WR since I went to school, when dinosaurs roamed the earth.

    The maps had different details on them, such as which country produced the most wool, or steel or corn and then there were a series of questions regarding the data on the map.

    Well, the comp copy they sent me had a map, and I kid you not, the map showed which countries produced the most “ozone killing chlorofluorocarbons”. And the questions asked, “Which country produces the most “ozone killing chlorofluorocarbons”?

    I decided that whatever worth WR had in my youth (and God only knows if we were being indoctrinated back then!), that the new, politically correct Weekly Reader would not be a part of my children’s education.

    • proof, how many parents would ignore “ozone killing chlorofluorocarbons? Lots of them. And the answer was…the dirty, mean, imperialistic U.S. of America.

      • If the parents ever saw it at all. When I went to school, I didn’t bring my Weekly Reader home for my parents to read, even if they’d been interested. The only reason why I, as a parent, saw these, was because I was the school administrator as well.

        There’s no telling, in the public schools, what influences your child is being exposed to, that never leave the classroom.

  • Thanks Maggie, brand new to blogging, this is encouraging.

    • Hi Thelma Lou, well welcome to the blogosphere. I loved you story. I hope you enjoy putting it all out there. I think blogging at NEOs will be a fun thing to do.

  • artiofab

    Hi Maggie,
    The image you use from extraordinaryintelligence.com is a photoshop manipulation; the claimed Time magazine cover from 1977 never existed. Time, back in 1977, looked more like this: http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-J42tQc488AM/UTC3V9iWnrI/AAAAAAAAAq4/rt0JhvTCEaI/s1600/The+Big+Freeze.jpg

    • artiofab, very interesting. I’ll check into it. I see the one you link to is about global cooling. Thanks for the heads up. I appreciate it.

    • I updated the post. Again, thanks.