The release of proposed new national science standards, including the emphasis of manmade climate change, will alter the classroom landscape for millions of students in the United States, as well as for at least one education publisher readying for the "major" undertaking.
The Next Generation Science Standards, which were released Tuesday after development by 26 states and several national scientific organizations, recommend that educators for the first time identify climate change as a core concept and stress the relationship between that change and human activity.
"Human activities, such as the release of greenhouse gases from burning fossil fuels, are major factors in the current rise in Earth's mean surface temperature (global warming)," according to the elementary school standards, which are not federally mandated and will be adopted on a state-by-state basis.
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The North American Association for Environmental Education http://www.naaee.net
published "Early Childhood Environmental Education Programs,"contains a set of recommendations for developing and administering high-quality environmental education programs for young children from birth to age eight, with a focus on ages three to six. A downloadable copy can be found at:
The NAEE has also moved to align Environmental Education with Common Core Standards in language arts, mathematics and science.
Education for Sustainable Development Toolkit includes references to the Brundtland Commission, The Rio Declaration on Environment and Development and to Chapter 36 of Agenda 21 relating to reinventing education for sustainable development.