Kinder entdecken ein Wald-Waschbecken.05.07.2023

Ecological pedagogy

The aim of the approach of ecological education is to make children more aware of the topics of ecology and nature. Central elements are to teach a responsible use of natural resources, to strengthen the connection to nature and to enable a more conscious experience of nature for the children. Ecological education is not a teaching paradigm, but rather an element of pedagogical education.

Dealing with natural resources

The approach of environmental pedagogy emerged in Germany in the 1970s. Originally, the aim was to strengthen the connection between people and nature. This idealistic goal is still a basic pillar of the approach today. The second pillar, which has become increasingly important in recent decades, is to teach children about the sustainable and careful use of natural resources. In the context of day-care centres and schools, there are various possibilities for this. For example, waste separation can be introduced, and the children are responsible for observing this together with the teachers: The children themselves are responsible for compliance. Another possibility is natural history about different plants that grow in local gardens. It is also possible to stimulate the children's curiosity about nature by experimenting with natural resources. All in all, it is about giving children the chance to experience environmental awareness and to participate in shaping it.

Environmental awareness: For all areas of the kindergarten

The extent to which ecological education is incorporated into the day care centre depends on the respective concept of the day care centre. For example, ecological education is the main element in forest and nature kindergartens. However, the pedagogical approach can also be combined with the open, semi-open or situational approach. But also in more traditional teachings, such as Kneipp's five elements, ecology represents a central element of the teaching. In conclusion, the possibilities of ecological pedagogy are becoming more and more diverse nowadays and awareness of planet Earth is also increasing more and more among adults but also children.

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