via Marilyn Mehlmann:
(more info via email@example.com)
Workshop 4-6 DecemberFacilitator training 3-7 December
The initiative to conduct a Learning for Change (L4C) Workshop in Malaysia is a collaborative effort between (i) the Swedish International Centre of Education for Sustainable Development (SWEDESD), (ii) Global Action Plan (GAP) International, (iii) National Committee on Training, Education and Awareness Programme of UNESCO-IHP Malaysia and (iv) Institute for Environment and Development (LESTARI), which is a centre of excellence in Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM). The workshop that is going to be conducted on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) approach will use the L4C method which developed by SWEDESD and GAP International to improve the sustainability of education and social change projects. It will provide participants with space to reflect on their own experience, and to share experiences of managing ESD projects. Through a series of exercises they will explore different layers related to their own cases and projects, and will be encouraged and coached to develop new solutions in co‐operation with other practitioners, formulating concrete follow‐up plans. The workshop will thus lay the basis for a new platform for learning and action.
Education for Sustainable Development (ESD)
Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) means including key sustainable development issues into teaching and learning; for example, climate change, disaster risk reduction, biodiversity, poverty reduction, and sustainable consumption. It also requires participatory teaching and learning methods that motivate and empower learners to change their behaviour and take action for sustainable development. ESD consequently promotes competencies like critical thinking, imagining future scenarios and making decisions in a collaborative way. It requires far-reaching changes in the way education is often practised today. It also allows every human being to acquire the knowledge, skills, attitudes and values necessary to shape a sustainable future.
Sustainable Development (SD) is an invitation for a change towards sustainability of here there are no experts, and many forms of sustainable living are yet to be developed or refined. For these reasons we were looking for a process that would go beyond supporting us to learn and would, in its core, promote transformative learning in the service of action. In addition, a common challenge is that to work with SD is to navigate in uncharted waters.
ESD is education and learning for sustainable development. Sustainable Development refers to humanity’s physical and man-made environment and the development thereof. With the natural environment acting as boundary and basis for human activity, sustainable development encompasses how human communities interact among themselves and modify their social, economic and political institutions and mechanisms, while at the same time interacting with their environment.
There are a number of distinctive features that can guide the search for appropriate ESD practice. They have to do with the educational approaches and methods that will enable learners to actively engage with the three dimensions of sustainable development:
- The planet and its natural resources
- The stock of humanity’s physical infrastructure
- The stock of humanity’s knowledge and technology, and social, cultural and economic formations, arrangements and mechanisms
Central to ESD is education and learning – the ways and the methods with which people understand their reality, come to grips with it and can act on it. ESD postulates that learning does not happen in isolation, but that it is a social act, inside and outside the classroom or seminar room. Learning is meaning making: Finding one´s place in an unfolding reality and making sense of it through reflexive action.
Learning and education include knowledge and understanding of scientific facts and processes, but they are also related to prior knowledge and understanding (e.g. cultural norms and indigenous or traditional knowledge). Learning and education recognize that local action and dynamics may have global consequences and vice versa.
ESD is not fixed. It is a continuously unfolding concept as well as practice. Through policy, research and practice at local, national, regional and international levels, ESD is moving into a promising direction, while gaining greater public and greater political recognition.
Learning for Change Workshop
“Learning for Change” focuses on the educational aspect of ESD, supporting the creation of hosting spaces in which people meet and bringing awareness of how people relate to each other and learn from each other in order to create new sustainable solutions. It is a gathering to make sense not only about the environment as such, but the environment and the human condition within it.
The Education for Sustainable Development that is promoted by L4C is a way in which people can promote change together, engaging freely. This education is very different from the authoritarian argumentation of the specialist, or the information overload of the old model. This difference is essential, because we cannot know what a sustainable society will look like nor what technologies it will be based on; our method of learning needs to be appropriate to that uncertainty.
The L4C thus builds capacity to engage and invite people to experiment and learn together. With the L4C workshop we hope that an ongoing learning journey started, or gained new, impetus.
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