New program for schools teaches Zeeland children about sustainability

New program for schools teaches Zeeland children about sustainability
New program for schools teaches Zeeland children about sustainability

By means of: Editorial

17 minutes ago


ZEELAND – IVN Nature Education and NME Zeeland are joining forces this year for a new and complete curriculum on sustainability. Collaboration with and financing by the Province of Zeeland makes this possible. Children aged 8 to 12 learn about local and global sustainability in this program.

Behind the scenes we are still working hard to set up the curriculum. The goal has been set for some time: taking children into the world of sustainability. With interactive lessons, students in groups 6, 7 and 8 are guided through the challenges facing our society. Consider themes such as biodiversity, climate & energy, circular economy and agriculture.

The teaching package

The curriculum is aimed at the upper grades of primary school. Students are challenged to look critically at their school environment and come up with solutions or improvements. In this way they strive to make their school ‘the sustainable school of the future’. For example, they draw up a climate-adaptive plan for their school, investigate solutions for salinization in the neighborhood and conduct a heating experiment in the classroom.

Through the lessons they learn how the different themes are connected and how they can have a positive influence on the entire system. At the end of the program, the classes can present their findings and advice to, for example, the school board or the municipal council.

‘Shower to a maximum of one song’

Debby Boers, Child & Nature project leader at IVN Nature Education Zeeland, says: “The focus of the program is on the systemic approach. We want children to understand that they are not all separate topics, but together they contribute to the bigger picture. In this way we teach them that small adjustments, such as showering to a maximum of one song by Emma Heesters, influence the climate and the immediate environment around them.”

“We are grateful that the Province of Zeeland is covering the start-up costs of the program and thus recognizes the importance of sustainability education for our youngest residents,” says Janneke Donkers, theme leader of Climate and Energy at NME Zeeland. “Fortunately, in terms of setting up the program, we don’t have to start from scratch. We already have a lot of offers on these themes from NME and IVN. The trick for us is mainly to interweave existing materials and new lessons to be set up in such a way that it becomes one whole.”

‘Aware of their choices’

Deputy Arno Vael (climate, water, agriculture): “These children are the farmers and entrepreneurs of the future. Like no other, they will have to deal creatively with challenges in areas such as climate change and food security. Thanks to the integrated approach of the curriculum, children learn how the various sustainability themes are connected to each other: one cannot be seen separately from the other. This makes children aware of the impact of their choices and encourages them to make responsible and sustainable choices.”

The article is in Dutch


Tags: program schools teaches Zeeland children sustainability


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