How to Encourage Environmental Citizenship

If you wish to encourage children at your setting or school to engage more the natural environment and learn how to care for the environment, here are some easy ways you can encourage this environmental citizenship:

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1. Take the curriculum outdoors
Think about how you can use the natural environment as part of your teaching – allowing children to see real life examples of what you are teaching. Learning about the water cycle is a great opportunity to get children outside, measuring rain fall, watering plants and/or playing with water without worrying about making a mess.

2. Lead by example
Set up recycling schemes are the school, support initiatives like Walk to School week and encourage healthy eating at lunchtimes- making sure there are lots of healthy options on the school lunch menu.

3. Involve parents
Think about putting a fact sheet together for parents on the subjects you’re covering to help them carry on with the learning at home

4. Make it Fun
Introduce competitions and campaigns which help to make environmental citizenship fun and reward children who play an active role in helping the environment.

5. Bridge the gap between inside and out
With each lesson think about whether it can be partly taught outside, if your classroom opens onto an outside area make use of it. To get even more use from it throughout the year consider installing a shade and shelter structure to allow learning and play in wet or sunny weather.

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Rachel is Able Canopies' previous Marketing Coordinator, she is an advocate of outdoor learning and the benefits the outdoor brings to all.

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