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How Early Childhood Education Responds to Climate Change

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For untrained eyes, a small community garden Salish territory on the coast and straitsWhat passers-by generally know as the University of Victoria campus may seem out of control. Full of dandelions, rams ears and grass, it’s hard to know where the garden starts and ends.


I’m wondering where those boundaries start and end A fruitful challenge for childEducator and researcher at the Child Care Center at the University of Victoria, currently working in the garden.

Instead of managing it, the group sank into the lush garden with fun. They didn’t know what was growing there or how it was growing. Those unknowns allowed them to move beyond the idea of ​​a “managed garden plot”. Instead, they think about what they belong to, why, and what else they don’t know.

Such an approach is important for children of this generation, and of future generations. Ecologically unstable world..

Climate change child network

Educators at the University of Victoria Center, along with more than 10 cooperating infant center educators in five countries (Australia, Ecuador, Canada, the United States, and the United Kingdom) Climate change child network..

As the director of this network of international interdisciplinary researchers and practitioners, I emphasize the importance of creating and experimenting with climate change responses to create climate change responses. recognizing. infant.. Educators develop climate-specific experiences with children in various toddler centers, addressing topics such as food, animals, energy, weather, waste, and water relationships.

Several Environmental condition Toddlers are facing toxicity, extraction, destruction, drought, pollution, wildfires and extreme weather today. Still, children are rarely consulted or included in environmental decisions.

We believe Paradigm shift Early childhood education can provide the path to deeper social change that is needed. Shifting means moving from information-driven learning to positioned, speculative and experimental learning.

Cooperate with the inhabitants of the garden

It can start with something like a researcher-led community garden on Vancouver Island B. Dennis Hodges and Narda NelsonIt challenges the ideas around Management and stewardship.. There, children are learning to work with the inhabitants of the community garden: by planting, digging, fertilizing, watering, and reacting to the actions of the garden itself.

Educators attended before working with children to foster awareness of the Lekwangen food system, a system of relationships that preceded the practices of settler colonial gardens in these lands. Colonial Reality Tour led by Cheryl Bryce..Bryce is from Songhees Nation, traditionally known as Lekwungen..Educators also engaged in dialogue With Earl Claxton Jr.SȾÁ, UTW̱ (Tsawout) W̱ SÁNEĆ (Saanich) Elder, ethnobotanist, knowledge holder.

Challenging assumptions

When educators invite children’s speculation, we can take advantage of other worlds to imagine alternatives.

“These beans grow very high and reach the clouds!” Said one child when he recently visited the garden. This is a beautiful declaration that forces us to challenge our assumptions.

Climate Change Children’s Network, Common Worlds Research CollectivePositioning early childhood education as a collective practice “Learn” with others.. The goal is to go beyond “learning” about the climate crisis and see them as part of it.

One example is Conversation with rainA project in Western Australia between the Art Gallery of Western Australia and researchers Mindy Blythe and Joe Polit.

They worked with young children to react to the painting, It’s raining on Kurtal, Wangkatjunga / Walmajarri by artist Ngarralja Tommy May.Children I was invited to think with my own breath.. In the sketchbook, the kids started by marking all inhalation and exhalation lines until the page was full. Next, consider the question, “What if it’s raining?” The children wrote as fast as rain, without stopping or planning.

Water story

In another project, children, educators, and researchers explored streams in each other’s environment on Earth. A group joined from Kryukshank Park in the country of Wurundjeri in Melbourne, Australia. Once a grassland, it has since become a bluestone quarry that has polluted streams, and is now a winding greenbelt in the calm suburbs. Another group was in Hello Woods, a secondary forest in a city on the west coast of Canada. This is a traditional, ancestral land of the coast and the people of the Straights Salish, now known as Victoria.

Researchers Nicoleland and Catherineham worked with their children in Australian and Canadian streamside environments to explore new ways to connect using FaceTime.Sit by the stream and with the kids educator We used FaceTime to share the story of streams and water with each other. They listened to the sound and asked: Where does the water go when it dries in a particular season? What did this place talk about before Settler Colonialism?

“Our water story is not worried about saving or rescuing water.” theWritten by a collaborator of the project. “Rather, they are about what may be needed to stay cautious about the problems visible in the polluted streams of the city’s natural space.”

The point of the FaceTime project was not to reinforce children’s thinking as “global citizens” to learn about people and customs in other cultures and places.

In fact, it resisted the urge to exchange facts about the park. Instead, it was described by feminist scholar Donna Haraway.Pass the pattern back and forth“Haraway discusses the children’s string game of a cat’s cradle, which is metaphorically passed down (and elaborately crafted) from person to person. When we” hold “each other’s stories and creations. This collective attention opens up new possibilities.

Pandemic experiment

Our work also responded to the pandemic. Cuenca-based projectEcuador turned the difficulty of the blockade into an opportunity to experiment at a traveling school.

Educators at Santana’s Children’s School, along with researchers Cristina D. Vintimilla and Veronica Pacini-Ketchabaw, created a kitchen garden in the city. The children met with the teacher three times a week to create a curriculum tailored to their particular environment.

At a traveling school on Mount Cabogana, a child noticed that a particular stick looked like a chicken leg wandering in the yard. This triggered a quest for bird movement through imitation and drawing.

The Climate change child network Created a new mode of environmental commitment Early childhood education.. These modes create the conditions for the youngest members of society, most affected by long-term ecological challenges, to actively participate in the transformation of the world they are inheriting.


Children learn to play in the natural sciences long before going to school classrooms and laboratories


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This article will be republished from conversation Under a Creative Commons license.read Original work..conversation

Quote: How early childhood education responds to climate change (April 26, 2022) can be found at https://phys.org/news/2022-04-early-childhood-climate.html in April 2022. I got 26 days.

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How Early Childhood Education Responds to Climate Change

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