In today's world, a complex myriad of environmental issues exist. From habitat and biodiversity loss, water and air pollution, climate change, and deforestation, the next generation will have multiple challenges to face. As youth activists organize strikes and demonstrations about current issues like climate change, we educators are poised to help give them the knowledge and tools to address these challenges with innovation and solutions. And there are many resources available to help us help them! Several different agencies and organizations have copious amounts of lessons and information to support educational curriculum designed to educate our students about these issues. Promoting scientific literacy in students strengthens their ability to problem-solve and address these global challenges.
Ohio Soil & Water Conservation Districts, like us here in Warren County, provide free educational programming to local schools to supplement teachers' lessons. Many environmental education curriculum exists to provide lessons and activities for all age levels. The Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies has a series of curriculum called Project Wild. According to AFWA, Project WILD's mission is to help students learn how to think, not what to think, about wildlife and the environment. All curriculum materials are backed by sound educational practices and theory, and represent the work of many professionals within the fields of education and natural resource management from across the country. Any educators interested in having or attending a Project Wild or Growing Up Wild workshop or Project WET workshop can contact our education staff at Warren County SWCD as we are certified facilitators of this training! Other established curriculum include Project WET, Project Learning Tree, and Project Underground.
The United States EPA also has educational hands on activities to teach about air quality and climate change. Through Particulate Matter Air Sensor Kits and interactive games, teachers can help students learn about how climate change is affecting our air quality and health. These and other climate change resources can be found at U.S. EPA.
Today's youth are preparing to be tomorrow's leaders. Education is vital to best prepare them to succeed in an ever changing world. The school year has begun and as we educators head into the classroom, we are ready to help engage, challenge, and inspire our students. Visit our Education page for more information on our environmental education programs.