Investigating early childhood teachers’ understandings of and practices in education for sustainability in Queensland: A Japan-Australia research collaboration

Inoue, Michiko, O'Gorman, Lyndal, & Davis, Julie (2016) Investigating early childhood teachers’ understandings of and practices in education for sustainability in Queensland: A Japan-Australia research collaboration. Australian Journal of Environmental Education. (In Press)

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Abstract

In a study undertaken in Queensland, Australia, analysis of a survey that included both qualitative and quantitative questions revealed that, like their Japanese counterparts, early childhood teachers do not have well-developed ideas and practices in education for sustainability (EfS). Instead, they mainly practise traditional nature-based activities, such as gardening or playing outdoors, and teaching about resource conservation through books, posters or fact sheets. Teachers’ understandings of nature education, environmental education, and education for sustainability seem to influence their educational practices. Deeper understandings about sustainability are necessary to extend beyond such traditional practices. Even though national curriculum frameworks and guidelines point to the importance of sustainability within early childhood curriculum, these appear to be insufficient in strengthening early childhood teachers’ ideas of sustainability and how to practise it effectively. We suggest that it would be beneficial for early childhood teachers, both preservice and inservice, to have professional development opportunities that build deeper understandings of sustainability and its implementation in their settings.

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ID Code: 93566
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
DOI: 10.1017/aee.2016.4
ISSN: 2049-775X
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Education
Current > Schools > School of Early Childhood
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2016 The Author(s)
Deposited On: 08 Mar 2016 04:59
Last Modified: 15 Mar 2016 04:39

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