People learn new concepts faster during the first few years of their life, therefore it is important for schools to teach their students about eco or environmental awareness as early as they can. There are still many schools though, that are not teaching children enough about the environment around them and what they can do to take better care of it. However, it may actually be easier to improve the knowledge of environmental awareness in your school than you think.
Below we have included tips on how to do this, but before that, just to clarify we will discuss exactly what ‘Environmental Awareness’ entails.
What Is Environmental Awareness?
Fairly self-explanatory, but Environmental Awareness focuses on being aware of the environment around us. It includes all fauna and flora, both on land and in the sea. This is important because the world is facing various challenges including:
- Water problems
- Global Warming
- Climate Change
Start The Conversation
The most important part of improving knowledge of these issues is to actually start the conversation about it. Environmental awareness should be part of all school curriculums and a lot can be learnt from the EcoEco Schools Initiative which has encouraged young people in around 49,000 different schools across 62 countries to be more environmentally aware.
Another great example is Chicago’s Tarkington Elementary School where there is an excellent strategy in place. One of the school’s teachers, Steven Cota, gives his students the chance to separate their own rubbish, to pick out the stuff that can be recycled and the stuff that can’t. Some great tips for trying to do a similar thing:
- Teach your kids the 3 R’s-Reduce, Reuse and Recycle
- Arrange days in the year for planting trees, making it part of a lesson about why trees are a crucial and integral part of the environment
- Encourage your students to turn lights and appliances off at the wall when they are not being used
- Teach your students to make sure all taps are tightened properly after use and encourage them to use water more sparingly
You Should Always Be Leading By Example
Children will be more likely to absorb and learn from the things you do rather than just the things you say. It is obviously important to teach children the importance of environmental awareness. However, when you are leading them by your own example, it will sink it more deeply.
Encourage Them To Spread The Word
You need to also encourage children to share what they learn about the environment with members of their family and their friends. Encourage them to apply what they have learned in the classroom at home, maybe even sending letters out to the parents informing them of their tasks.
The most important thing about raising environmental awareness in the school setting is that you do it. Once you show children ways they can help improve the local environment, they will get a thirst for it and want to continue learning more.