chapter  24
38 Pages

Environmental Education

ByPaul Hart

The field of environmental education and associated research activities are experiencing a period of rapid growth as we settle into the new millennium. Many reasons are claimed to explain this relatively new focus, including increasingly more pervasive and global environmental issues, changing societal expectations, and educational reform. Societies are searching for new narratives that give guidance and inspiration to people and purpose to schooling. Within these narratives, that range from teaching young people to accept the world as it is, to those that encourage critical thinking more distanced from conventional wisdom and intended to change what is wrong, is one that insists on our moral obligation to the planet. It is a narrative of extraordinary potential, says Postman (1995), because it is a story of human beings as stewards of the Earth, caretakers with a global consciousness and a sense of educational responsibility.