E.E. is short for Environmental Education;
What Is Environmental Education?
Environmental education is the study of the relationships and interactions between dynamic natural and human systems. Environmental education:
- Includes learning in the field as well as the classroom
- Incorporates the teaching methods of outdoor education, experiential education, and place-based education
- Is inherently interdisciplinary
- Promotes school/community partnerships
- Is hands-on, student-centered, inquiry driven, engages higher level thinking skills, and relevant to students’ everyday lives
- Develops awareness, increases knowledge, builds skills, and creates the capacity for stewardship and good citizenship regarding the environment upon which we depend for life support.
- Helps address the causes of “nature deficit disorder”
- Boosts student achievement in math, science, reading, writing and social studies
Environmental education (EE) teaches children and adults how to learn about and investigate their environment, and to make intelligent, informed decisions about how they can take care of it.
EE is taught in traditional classrooms, in communities, and in settings like nature centers, museums, parks, and zoos. Learning about the environment involves many subjects—earth science, biology, chemistry, social studies, even math and language arts—because understanding how the environment works, and keeping it healthy, involves knowledge and skills from many disciplines.
EE works best when it is taught in an organized sequence. In schools, EE often reflects state and national learning standards. “Done right,” EE not only leads to environmentally literate people, but also helps increase student academic achievement.