Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
×
Home

Telling Reflections: Teaching Sustainably in a Complex Learning Environment

  • Debbie Prescott (a1)

Abstract

This article examines learning design in a postgraduate preservice teacher setting. The overarching aim was to embed environmentally responsive approaches throughout two companion units for diverse student cohorts. This article reports on a teacher educator self-study in a regional university with extensive online delivery for large units (300–800 students) in a 1-year course. The author examines how assessment tasks in literacy- and numeracy-oriented units are designed to meaningfully integrate environmental sustainability using contextual cues, collaborative learning, complex tasks, and reflexivity. The author argues for the use of these four key guidelines of environmentally responsive pedagogies alongside environmental education programs to emphasise messages of sustainability even in units that are not traditionally environmentally oriented. Challenges include problematising the nature of effective teaching and dealing with the complexities of purposeful learning. Innovative unit learning design alone, however, is inadequate if the surrounding systems are fragmented and seen as separate to learning about sustainability.

Copyright

Corresponding author

Address for correspondence: Debbie Prescott, School of Education, Charles Darwin University, Casuarina Campus, Ellengowan Drive, Casuarina, NT 0909, Australia. Email: deborah.prescott@cdu.edu.au

References

Hide All
Bamford, B. (1999). From environmental education to ecopolitics. Affirming changing agendas for teachers. Educational Philosophy and Theory, 31, 157173.
Barnes, D. (1971). Classroom contexts for language and learning, Educational Review, 23, 235247.
Buchanan, J. (2012). Sustainability education and teacher education: finding a natural habitat? Australian Journal of Environmental Education, 28, 108124.
Clandinin, D.J., & Connelly, F.M. (2000). Narrative inquiry: Experience and story in qualitative research. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publishers.
Davis, B., & Sumara, D. (2012). Fitting teacher education in/to/for an increasingly complex world. Complicity: An International Journal of Complexity and Education, 9, 3040. Retrieved from http://ejournals.library.ualberta.ca/index.php/complicity/article/view/16531/13213.
Davis, B., Sumara, D., & Luce-Kapler, R. (2008). Engaging minds: Changing teaching in complex times (2nd ed.) New York: Routledge.
Davis, B., Sumara, D., & Luce-Kapler, R. (2015). Engaging minds: Cultures of education and practices of teaching (3rd ed.) New York: Routledge.
Donnelly, K., & Wiltshire, K. (2014). Review of the Australian Curriculum — Final report. Retrieved from https://docs.education.gov.au/documents/review-australian-curriculum-final-report
Edwards-Groves, C., Anstey, M., & Bull, G. (2014). Classroom talk: Understanding dialogue, pedagogy and practice. Sydney, Australia: Primary English Teaching Association Australia (PETAA).
Ferreira, J., Ryan, L., Davis, J., Cavanagh, M., & Thomas, J. (2009). Mainstreaming sustainability into pre-service teacher education in Australia. Canberra, Australia: Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA).
Ferreira, J., Ryan, L., & Tilbury, D. (2014). Planning for success: Factors influencing change in teacher education. Australian Journal of Environmental Education, 30, 136146.
Henderson, K., & Tilbury, D. (2004). Whole-school approaches to sustainability: An international review of sustainable school programs. Canberra, Australia: Department of the Environment and Heritage.
Jardine, D. (2012). Pedagogy left in peace. London: Continuum.
Kennelly, J., Taylor, N., & Serow, P. (2011). Education for sustainability and the Australian curriculum. Australian Journal of Environmental Education, 27, 209218.
LaBoskey, V.K. (2004). The methodology of self-study and its theoretical underpinnings. In Loughran, J., Hamilton, M.L., LaBoskey, V.K., & Russell, T. (Eds.), International handbook of self-study of teaching and teacher education practices (pp. 816869). Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic Publishers.
McDowell, P. (2013). Curriculum through literacy: Applying ‘parallel pedagogy’ in pre-service teacher education. In Pandian, A., Liew, C.C.L., Tan, D.A.L., Muniandy, J., Lee, B.C., & Toh, C.H. (Eds.), New literacies: Reconstructing language and education (pp. 230246). Newcastle upon Tyne, UK: Cambridge Scholars.
Mercer, N. (1995). The guided construction of knowledge: Talk amongst teachers and learners. Clevedon, UK: Multilingual Matters.
Moekle, K.R. (2012). The rhetoric of sustainability: Ecocomposition and environmental pragmatism. In Bartels, K.A. & Parker, K.A. (Eds.), Teaching sustainability; Teaching sustainably. Sterling, VA: Stylus Publishing.
Morin, E. (1999). Seven complex lessons in education for the future (Poller, N., Trans.). Paris, France: UNESCO.
Schultz, M., Rockström, J., Öhman, M., Cornell, S., Persson, Å., & Norström, A. (2013). Human prosperity requires global sustainability: A contribution to the post-2015 agenda and the development of sustainable development goals. Stockholm: Stockholm Resilience Centre.
Sterling, S. (2012). The Future Fit Framework: An introductory guide to teaching and learning for sustainability in HE. York, UK: The Higher Education Academy.
Thomas, I. (2014). Pedagogy for education for sustainability in higher education. Sustainability 6, 17051708. doi:10.3390/su6041705.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Australian Journal of Environmental Education
  • ISSN: 0814-0626
  • EISSN: 2049-775X
  • URL: /core/journals/australian-journal-of-environmental-education
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Keywords

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed