Whereas putting solar panels on roofs can be a long payback for many, schools are in prime position to help the planet both locally and globally. Schools are increasingly signing up to qualify for the Eco Schools Green Flag, which is good financially as well as environmentally.
Green Teaching is a book on helping teaches to embrace ecological choices and to use nature as the location for learning, to help transform how children are taught. The author draws on international research and case studies to offer ways to embed green teaching and nature, to transform how young children are taught. Dr Claire Warden developed the award-winning Auchlone Nature Kindergarten in Scotland and is advisor to the Children and Nature Network.
designing schools for good mental health
Schools That Heal is a book on how to design schools that are less like prisons (designed from fear of truancy and vandalism) and more like nurturing environments for learning and good mental health. Schools with access to nature, big windows and open campuses are relaxing and improve academic performance. From classroom design to outdoor space, ideas are borne from reducing natural disasters, pandemic isolation (more fresh air) and US school shootings.
Claire Latané is a landscape architecture professor at a Californian university, whose teaching and scholarship apply research connecting the environment to mental health. She has designed interactive environments for schools of all kings, plus colleges, universities, affordable housing communities and public parks. She lives in LA, where her own garden is an experiment on what will grow wild, with little care but lots of love.