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Develop green awareness from a young age

Environmental education should start early (Worm tea, magic cleaners win schools top green award; Nov 9).

A recent study by Brown University has shown that children develop habits by the age of nine.

In her book, Young Children And The Environment: Early Education For Sustainability, Dr Julie Davis of the Queensland University of Technology states that on top of environmental knowledge and exposure, it is important to encourage enactive learning from an early age.

This can be done by engaging children in activities that help them to interact with and even save the environment.

It is important for them to understand the world they live in, along with the problems that will affect them in the future.

Environmental education can be incorporated into Singapore's education framework.

Starting from pre-school, nature walks can be planned for children to appreciate nature.

Interdisciplinary teaching can be explored at the primary school level, where science and civics education lessons can work together to inculcate the right environmental habits.

At the secondary level, projects can incorporate both geography and biology concepts to allow students to learn through environmental conservation.

The new framework and syllabus can be regulated by the Ministry of Education, in collaboration with the National Environment Agency.

Environmental civil groups such as the Cicada Tree Eco-Place, which focuses on educating children about the environment, can be engaged to help as well.

By teaching children what they can do as individuals, we can start developing a generation of people who will take ownership of the world they live in.

Wong Kang Ming

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on November 19, 2017, with the headline 'Develop green awareness from a young age'. Print Edition | Subscribe