As our students are the future stewards of our environment that sustains our society and future generations, they need to understand the issues, relationships and interactions between natural and human systems. Through Environmental Education, we can help our children make the conceptual connections between economic prosperity, benefits to society, environmental health, and their own well-being. We believe that being environmentally literate will be critical to our children’s future.
Environmental Education is not a separate subject on its own but mapped into the curriculum. It will focus on increase students’ awareness and knowledge about the environment, develop values and 21st Century Competencies and encourage active participation in working towards resolution of environmental problems. Students will embark on learning journey, outdoor learning activities and projects as part of their learning.
Outdoor Education Module
At Primary 1 and 2, students will be embarking on learning journeys within Punngol such as Punggol Waterway and Lorong Halus Wetland Reserves to explore learn about various environmental issues and practices found in these places. They will also be embarking on environmental projects to hone their problem solving, critical thinking and collaboration skills.
Learning tasks and activities will be designed for pupils to learn the language in authentic and meaningful environments. For example, lessons will be planned around theme linked to STELLAR text such as The Red Rose and My River at Primary 1 to help pupils use related language skills, structures and vocabulary in spoken and written language to express ideas.
Environmental education provides a meaningful and authentic context for the learning of mathematical concepts and skills. Learning tasks and activities will be designed for pupils to learn topics on Measurement and Statistics from P1 to P3. For example, at Primary 1, learning activities will be constructed to introduce concept of measurements of height of plants with non-standard measurements like length of a child’s foot and eventually leading up to the use of standard units of measurements. Similarly, pupils will be engaged in activities to present information in pictorial forms as leading in activities for picture graph using the plants in the environment. Collaborative learning will be used to allow pupils to work in team and exchange ideas. Journal will be used to document learning as well. As the pupils progress to other higher levels, the complexity of learning tasks will increase in complexity in accordance to outcomes detailed in the curriculum.
Environmental Education lends itself well in the learning of Science. Learning activities are designed to help pupils understand concepts of Cycles, Systems, Interactions and Energy. At the same time, the nature of the activities will require pupils to utilise skills such as observing, comparing, classifying, communicating, inferring, and predicting.
In environmental education, children are given sensory experiences with soil, water, plants and animals. Here children can observe, classify, measure, handle, feel excitement, manipulate, create work independently and cooperatively. In so doing, children pick up learning skills while having some idea of how their behaviour affects other living things.
Research has shown that Environmental Education:
- Increases student engagement in Science and Mathematics
- Connects classroom learning to the real world
- Provide purpose and authenticity in learning
- Improve students’ achievement in Languages
- Increase enthusiasm and engagement for learning
- Promote students’ ownership of their learning
- Reduce "nature deficit disorder” with more outdoor activities.
- Develop critical 21st Century Competencies such as problem solving, consensus building, information management, communication, and critical and creative thinking