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By Jothi F Xavier
  |
Apr 23rd, 2018
  |

“To teach environment one has to change the very approach to teaching and learning, and not merely change content, while retaining existing teaching methodologies.” Kartikeya V. Sarabhai, The Green Teacher

What is environmental education (EE) ? and why the thrust of our EE is action?
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Environmental Education (EE) aims to get the participants informed, inspired and get them involved in environmental protection. žThe first intergovernmental Conference on Environmental Education held at Tbilisi in 1977 and Congress on Environmental Education and Training held by the UNESCO-UNEP in 1987 gave a greater emphasis to Action.

Environmental Education aims to develop the following qualities in the participants such as: students, teachers, youth and women.

  1. An awareness of the environment and its problems.
  2. Basic knowledge and understanding of the environment and its inter-relationship with human being.
  3. Social values and attitudes which are in harmony with environmental quality.
  4. Skills to solve environmental problems.
  5. Ability to evaluate environmental measures and education programmes.
  6. A sense of responsibility and urgency towards the environment so as to ensure appropriate actions to solve environmental problems.

The teacher’s role here is that of a guide, who enables students to learn through participation, discovery and personal experience. žOutdoor environmental education programs offer immense possibilities, for example: experiments, research findings and inspirational people.
žOutside the classroom can be used to facilitate Education for Sustainable Development.
In Environmental education, it is important to take the students outdoor and organize activity-based programme. ž

Going from awareness to action pose a challenge.

The Challenge to Environmental Education for Action How LEAF Program is Addressing those Challenges
  • žConventional classroom methods.
  • žThe number of students in each class is too large for innovation & creativity.
  • žLack of resources or facilities for EE.
  • žNo access to teaching aids like films, posters, chart & activity modules.
  • žEnvironment is all-encompassing, multi-disciplinary and dynamic. Schools are unable to do justice to the subject.
  • žSchools are unable to contextualize EE in real life situations and problems.
  • žLEAF is exploring innovative ways of teaching.
  • žFor those who are interested in learning outside the classroom, LEAF offers them a platform.
  • žLEAF is partnering with bio-reserves & green institutions for environmental exposure.
  • žLEAF is developing/compiling audio-visual materials and disseminating them to the students and teachers.
  • žThe teaching-learning experience our module offers are scientific, aesthetic, socio-economic and political perspectives.
  • žLEAF programs with its practical activities and first-hand experiences are geared to create a greater understanding of one’s environment.

LEAF (Leaders in Environmental Action Force) program initiated by GJEM & Green the Blue Charitable Trust is primarily a leadership and environmental education program with innovative pedagogy. The program enables the children to learn about key environmental issues and develop solutions to mitigate them. Some of the sustainable practices they learn are put into use in the schools and at their houses. 

LEAF program consists of 8 day long workshops conducted within a span of 10 months. 

The workshops are conducted outside the classroom often in places such as organic farm, bio-reserves, solar hubs, herbal garden and institutions where sustainable practices are implemented. In this way, students get firsthand experience of eco-friendly practices.

•Bio-diversity
•Organic farming-kitchen garden
•Alternative energy
•Eco-Art Programs & Art from Waste
•Global warming & Climate Change
•Water harvesting
•Solid waste Management
•Campaign on environmental issues
•Eco-Journalism

To read in more detail about the LEAF program please download the PPT Presentation “Environment Education for Action”


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