Are you ready to meet the 'Climate Challenge'? Part 1B
Here, we look at where the Climate Challenge issues fit into the UK curricula.
The Climate Challenge and the UK Curricula
In England, the vision of climate change being at the heart of education is evolving and is planned to be in place by 2023. However, we know that already one of the three aims of the English Primary Science Curriculum is that:
- Children are equipped with the scientific knowledge required to understand the uses and implications of science, today and for the future.
This implies that children should be learning about the issues of global warming, loss of biodiversity and pollution to ensure they are prepared for their future. Their understanding will be closely linked to their learning in other topics such as Plants, Animals including humans, States of Matter, Electricity, and Living things and their habitats within which there is the Year 4 objective:
- To recognise that environments can change and that this can sometimes pose dangers to living things.
In the Northern Ireland Curriculum for Science, children are taught within themes of Interdependence and Change over time. During Key Stage 1 they will learn about:
- The variety of living things in the world and how we can take care of them.
- Changes in the local natural environment, including how they can affect living things.
During Key Stage 2 they will learn about:
- The relationship between animals and plants in a habitat.
- How waste can be reduced, reused or recycled and how this can be beneficial.
In the Scottish Sciences Curriculum for Excellence, within strands on Biodiversity and Interdependence, Energy sources and sustainability, Earth’s materials, Chemical changes and Topical science, children should:
- Contribute to the design or conservation of a wildlife area (SCN 2-02a).
- Collaborate in the design of an investigation into the effects of fertilisers on the growth of plants. Express an informed view of the risks and benefits of their use (SCN 2-03a).
- Consider examples where energy is conserved, identify the energy source, how it is transferred and ways of reducing wasted energy (SCN 2-04a).
- Explore non-renewable energy sources, describe how they are used in Scotland today and express an informed view on the implications for their future use (SCN 2-04b).
- Investigate the use and development of renewable and sustainable energy to gain an awareness of their growing importance in Scotland or beyond (TCH 2-02b).
- Take appropriate action to ensure conservation of materials and resources, considering the impact of my actions on the environment (TCH 1-02a).
- Investigate different water samples from the environment and explored methods that can be used to clean and conserve water and be aware of the properties and uses of water (SCN 2-18a).
- Contribute to discussions of current scientific news items to help develop an awareness of science (SCN 1-20a).
- Research and discuss the contribution that individuals are making to scientific discovery and invention and the impact this has made on society (SCN 2-20a).
- Report and comment on current scientific news items to develop a good knowledge and understanding of topical science (SCN 2-20b).
In the NEW Welsh Science and Technology Curriculum, children explore environmental issues along progression steps:
- Step 1: I can explore the environment, make observations and communicate my ideas
- Step 2: I can recognise that what I do and the things I use, can have an impact on my environment and on living things and I can identify things in the environment which may be harmful and can act to reduce risk to myself and others.
- Step 3: I can understand how my actions and the actions of others impact on the environment and living things.
Return to Part 1A: What is the ‘Climate Challenge’? here or read Part 2: How to teach the Climate Challenge here
To read the Welsh translation of this blog, click here.