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Climate Change: Curriculum

Volume 471: debated on Tuesday 29 January 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what steps have been taken to make the teaching of climate change and its implications for the future part of the curriculum; and if his Department will consider combining physical education with green activities, such as planting trees. (182743)

Under both the current national curriculum in England for science and the new science curriculum to be taught in schools from September 2008, pupils aged 11-14 are taught about renewable energy and the possible impact of human activity, such as the burning of fossil fuels, on the environment. The current geography curriculum for 11 to 14-year-olds requires pupils to be taught about resource planning and management issues, for example developing alternative energy sources. From September 2008, “environmental interaction and sustainable development” will be one of the key concepts in the new geography curriculum for 11 to 14-year-olds with a requirement to study climate change.

Getting young people involved in activities such as cycling is also of great value in promoting habits that are both environmentally friendly promoting personal health and wellbeing.

In addition, the Growing Schools initiative encourages, supports and inspires all schools to harness the full potential of the living world as a cross-curricular teaching and learning resource, both within and beyond the school grounds. The programme focuses particularly on food, farming and environmental issues and on ensuring pupils are given first hand, practical experience in the outdoor classroom.