Ecological education

Written by: Roumenka Chapkanova

Sustainability – a world ethic

What is environment?

The natural environment
The social environment
The personal environment

What is environmental education?

Learning how to care for our environment. It involves understanding concepts ABOUT the environment, developing sensitivities THROUGH the environment for fostering values that commits to acting FOR the environment.

Principles of environmental education

  • It’s interdisciplinary
  • It’s holistic
  • Incorporates concepts that are integral to an understanding and values that accompany such understanding; builds awareness of the interrelatedness of local and global environments
  • Encourages problem solving
  • Examines issues of local and global significance
  • Generates actions
  • Uses variety of teaching and learning strategies and resources
  • Is student centered
  • Has a community orientation
  • Is coherent and progressive
  • Is exemplary – students and teachers have a special responsibility to model the behavior that they are promoting.
  • Is inclusive, providing subject matter, language, learning opportunities and assessment methods that meet the needs of all students;
  • Has direct experience at its core.

Teachers can contribute by incorporating the principles underlying EE in their learning and teaching programs and learning and teaching environment.

Students will:

  • use all their senses to explore a variety of environments;
  • evaluate and reflect on these explorations;
  • observe and record information, ideas and feelings about Environment;
  • investigate and communicate concern about environmental matters;
  • gather, analyze and synthesize information logically;
  • present information in oral, written and graphic form;
  • view environmental matter from variety of perspectives;
  • discuss and debate alternative viewpoints on environmental issues
  • identify, clarify and express value judgments that relate to the environment.
  • Attitudes
  • Knowledge

Experiencing

Frameworks for investigative learning in environmental education

How to teach; What to teach – an active investigative process;

IMPORTANT

  • the student’s choice and negotiation
  • the incorporation of reflection with learning /and teaching/ process
  • an emphasis on critical thinking and active life learning.

Types of teaching/learning approaches

  1. Action research;
  2. Social investigation strategy
  3. English Language Art Model
  4. Investigating environmental issue

WORTHWHILE ACTIVITIES

  • blindfold trust walk
  • cartoons in the classroom
  • cause and effect wheel
  • cooperative squares;
  • cooperative faces
  • development consequence chart
  • diamond ranking
  • field work
  • flow chart
  • futures timeline
  • group roles
  • road map
  • role-playing and drama;
  • space time grid
  • values scales;
  • woolly thinking

Work on lnguage skills development

  1. Criteria for well -written biography
  2. Developing and improving interviewing skills
  3. Achieving a balance between information and values
  4. Presentation of biography
  5. Reflecting on the unit of work
  6. Interviewing

Work on specific science matter /chemistry, biology, physics/

  1. People and environment
  2. Gathering and recording of data
  3. Comprehension analyses and application
  4. Synthesis, evaluation and decision making
  5. Reporting

METHODS LEARNER / TEACHER ROLES

METHOD LEARNER TEACHER
Situational language training /SLT/ Imitator

Memoriser

Context setter

Error corrector

Audio linguism /AL/ Pattern Practicer

Accuracy enthusiast

Language Modeler/Drill Leader
Communicative Language Teaching /CLT/ Improviser

Negotiator

Need analyst

Task designer

Total Physical Response /TPR/ Order Taker

Performer

Commander

Action monitor

The silent way/SW/ Inventor

Problem solver

Pantomimist

Natural observer

Community Language Learning /CLL/ Collaborator

Whole Person

Counselor

Paraphraser

The Natural Approach /NA/ Guesser

Immerser

Actor

Props User

Suggestopaedia /S/ Relaxer

True believer

Autohypnotist

NEW TRENDS IN TEACHING SCIENCE-TECHNOLOGY-ENVIRONMENT-SOCIETY

/STES/ and HOCS

A meaningful science and technological teaching is envisioned as interdisciplinary critical thinking – problem solving and decision making, oriented teaching and consequently High Order Cognitive Skills /HOCS/ learning in the science-technology-environment-society /STES/ interface context learning to a capacity to transfer beyond the subject/s/ or discipline/s/ specificity.

A STES oriented HOCS teaching should not only be consonant with the environmentally imperative interdisciplinary HOCS orientation in teaching but it also should foster HOCS learning. It is vital to develop the HOCS of students and not simply to force them learn to apply algorithms and “exercise” sets.

So that the only necessary precondition for the people’s reasonable environmental behavior and action of teachers and students alike as partners in a collaborative interactive reflective science-technology- teaching – learning oriented process.

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