The Failure of Environmental Education (and How We Can Fix It)

By Charles Saylan; Daniel T. Blumstein | Go to book overview

CHAPTER FIVE
The Needs of Environmentally
Active Citizens

In previous chapters, we’ve discussed some of the problems facing our planet, and reasons why environmental education has not brought about measurable impacts on or reversals of these destructive trends. We have made a case for developing a more responsible citizenry as a central factor in changing the collective future for the better. But what does this really mean? What are the elements of the sort of responsibility that successfully leads to broad-scale action? In this chapter, we examine those elements and identify some of the traits we believe necessary to help active citizens confront the coming challenges to our planet’s environment. Traits that public education must help instill.

One of the exciting and frustrating things about education is that it’s impossible to teach everyone exactly what they must know. Fundamentally, educators should teach their students how to learn and how to ask critical questions. Students need ecological, moral, and environmental awareness along with the practical skills necessary to convert that awareness into action.

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The Failure of Environmental Education (and How We Can Fix It)
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Preface ix
  • Chapter One - The Problem(S) 1
  • Chapter Two - Foundations 21
  • Chapter Three - What Went Wrong 38
  • Chapter Four - Accountability and Institutional Mind-Set 57
  • Chapter Five - The Needs of Environmentally Active Citizens 72
  • Chapter Six - Between Awareness and Action 95
  • Chapter Seven - A Political Primer 116
  • Chapter Eight - Consumption, Conservation, and Change 135
  • Chapter Nine - An Evolving Metric 158
  • Chapter Ten - And How We Can Fix It 173
  • Appendix - Greening Schools for Alternative Education 199
  • Notes 203
  • Selected Bibliography 219
  • Acknowledgments 225
  • Index 229
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