CLIMATE CHANGE EDUCATION IN CLASSROOM
“Climate change is real. It is happening right now, it is the most urgent threat facing our entire species and we need to work collectively together and stop procrastinating.” – Leonardo Di Caprio
Climate change is one of the most important concerns we face today, posing long-term threats to the environment, economy, and social well-being. Environmental education, education for sustainable development, and eco-social competency all include climate change education. Citizenship, Governance, human & civil rights, media education, as well as education on global and future challenges, are all intertwined.
But before we dwell more on this subject, we need to understand what exactly is climate change. According to NASA, it can be defined as “a change in the usual weather found in a place. This could be a change in how much rain a place usually gets in a year. Or it could be a change in a place’s usual temperature for a month or season. Climate change is also a change in Earth’s climate. This could be a change in Earth’s usual temperature. Or it could be a change in where rain and snow usually fall on Earth. Climate takes hundreds or even millions of years to change.”
Children and youth are the most vulnerable to climate impacts, which are expected to grow over time, due to the fact that 25% of the world’s population is under the age of 18. Most pupils in our country, and even around the world, recognise that climate change is caused by humans, but they don’t believe it can be solved with existing efforts, leaving them feeling helpless, terrified, nervous, and dismissive. As a result, school is an important place to learn about climate change and to raise a generation of young people who are prepared to face this massive problem.
Building a sustainable future, encouraging action, and developing influencing skills at the social and personal levels are the core goals of climate education. It is critical not only to develop a full understanding of climate change, but also to alter one’s own behaviour and activities. In this context, behaviour refers to people’s actions in response to climate change. Many social organisations are creating mitigation, disaster risk education and adaptation measures in addition to engaged individuals, and climate education should give at least basic information on these actors.
For a variety of reasons, the urgent need for climate education has risen recently. Climate change’s effects are becoming more visible in environment and society, both worldwide and locally. There are many misconceptions and misunderstandings concerning climate change. Climate change is a ubiquitous problem that necessitates a multidisciplinary approach, and complete learning abilities are required to fully comprehend it. Comprehensive learning is not only about defining concepts and memorizing facts; it’s also about predicting the future, comprehending complicated relationships between events, and putting what you’ve learned into practice.
However, we all know that introducing or teaching a new kit comes with its own set of obstacles and hurdles. Some educators believe they have limited knowledge and professional development in climate change education, leading them to avoid teaching it altogether or beyond what is required by curriculum, and schools frequently focus on climate change within the science curriculum while neglecting to explore broader economic, political, and social impacts.
To incorporate climate change education into classroom instruction, educators do not need to be specialists in the field. Rather, teachers can use their positions to go beyond simply teaching facts and engage students in actions that have real-world consequences for climate change. We should all agree to “improve climate change education” as part of our collective obligation to the next generation.
Collaboration among active citizens, including young people, is required to address climate change. Although no one is born with exceptional influencing abilities, they can be learned. For this, a young kid requires the assistance of a caring adult, such as a dedicated teacher. The adult’s responsibility is not to do everything for the child, but to provide knowledge and abilities – at the absolute least, information and retrieval skills – to help the child avoid potential hazards.
Above all, don’t train children to be only passive witnesses of scientific events. If we’ve learned anything from the past, it’s that we need to act now to keep science at the forefront of our national conversation. Students can also take action by pursuing a solution to an issue, forming a club, writing a speech, hosting forums, organising awareness rallies, and so on. Encourage students to pursue their interests outside of the classroom, to promote excellent science, and to make the world a better place to live.
When teaching children about climate change, educators make it perfectly clear that it has repercussions for the environment and human life. Many children want to do something about climate change and are curious about how they might do so in the classroom. Educators can incorporate climate change aspects into their lectures to ensure that these kids have the knowledge they need to address the issue in whichever capacity they see suitable.