Simply speaking, theory refers to aparticular kind of explanation. Aspointed out by Boss, Doherty, LaRossa, Schumm, & Steinmetz (1993: 20):”Theorizing is the process of systematically formulating and organizing ideasto understand a particular phenomenon. Thus, a theory is the set ofinterconnected ideas that emerge from this process”.The theoretical framework is thestructure that can support or hold the theory of the research study and itguides the researcher in determining what things he /she needs to measure andstudy. A theoretical framework consists of concepts, together with theirdefinitions, and existing theory/theories that are used for researcher’sparticular study.
So the theoretical framework must demonstrate anunderstanding of theories and concepts that are relevant to the topic of theresearch paper.In the present study the researcher hasdeveloped the theoretical framework on the basis of the history ofenvironmental education and the history of science education. Nature of scienceand different educational commissions has also been taken account of. Since thepresent study is basically about the responsiveness of the science curriculumtowards the environmental issues, the first topic to start with is the natureof science, without which the essence of the study could not be highlighted.SCIENCEEDUCATIONPEDAGOGICALAPPROACHESDISCOURSEOF PEDAGOGICAL APPROACHES IN SCIENCE2.2NATURE OF SCIENCE The fundamental aspect of the nature of science hasdeveloped over a period of time by the ways of observing, thinking,experimenting, and validating. And this certainly reflects how science tends todiffer from other modes of knowing.
The union of science, mathematics, andtechnology forms the scientific Endeavour and this is that makes it so successful.The nature of science is the key ideas and principles through which we can knowabout the characteristics of scientific knowledge and which describes scienceas a way of knowing. The nature of science consists of those seldom taught butvery important features of working science i.e.,its realms and limits , itsbiases, its level of uncertainty , its socio aspect and the reasons for itsreliability.
The main ideas regarding the nature of science are:-scientific knowledge while durable has a tentativecharacter-Scienceis empirically based (based on or derived fromobservation of the natural world)- Science cannot provide a complete answer to allthe questions-Science demands evidence-Scienceis inferential, imaginative and creative-Science explains and predicts – Science follows very specific rules and itsresults are subject to testing and, if necessary, revision-Science is not authoritarian- ThereAre Generally Accepted Ethical Principles in the Conduct of Science 2.3HISTORY AND EMERGENCE OF ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATIONEnvironmental Education today must be understood aseducation for sustainability. The flow information and knowledge caused byEnvironmental Education have the potential to build a new vision of the worldcapable of guiding actions towards sustainability.The history of environmental education can be searched back inthe 18th century when JeanJacques Rousseau stressedthe importance of an education that focuses on the environment in Emile: or, On Education.
There after several decades later, Louis Agassiz, aSwiss-born naturalist, echoed Rousseau’s philosophy as he encouraged studentsto “Study nature, not books.” The work of these two influential scholars helpedlay the foundation for a concrete environmental education program, known as nature study,which took place in the late 19th century and early 20th century.The nature study movement used fables and moral lessons tohelp students develop an appreciation of nature and embrace the natural world. Anna Botsford Comstock, the head ofthe Department of Nature Study at Cornell University, was a prominent figure inthe nature study movement and wrote the Handbook for Nature Study in 1911,which used nature to educate children on cultural values. Comstock and the other leaders of themovement, such as Liberty Hyde Bailey, helped Nature Study garner tremendousamounts of support from community leaders, teachers, and scientists and changethe science curriculum for children across the United States.A new type of environmental education, ConservationEducation, emerged as a result of the Great Depression and Dust Bowl during the 1920s and 1930s.
Conservation Education dealt with the natural world in a drastically differentway from Nature Study because it focused on rigorous scientific training ratherthan natural history. ConservationEducation was a major scientific management and planning tool that helped solvesocial, economic, and environmental problems during this time period.The modern environmental education movement, which gainedsignificant momentum in the late 1960s and early 1970s, stems from Nature Studyand Conservation Education. During this time period, many events – such asCivil Rights, the Vietnam War, and the Cold War – placed Americans at odds withone another and the U.S. government. However, as more people began to fear thefallout from radiation, the chemical pesticides mentioned in Rachel Carson’s SilentSpring, and the significant amounts of air pollution and waste, thepublic’s concern for their health and the health of their natural environmentled to a unifying phenomenon known as environmentalism.
Environmentaleducation was born of the realization that solving complex local and globalproblems cannot be accomplished by politicians and experts alone, but requires”the support and active participation of an informed public in theirvarious roles as consumers, voters, employers, and business and communityleaders”.One of the first articles about environmental education as anew movement appeared in the PhiDelta Kappan in 1969,authored by JamesA. Swan. A definition of”Environmental Education” first appeared in The Journal ofEnvironmental Education in1969, authored by WilliamB.
Stapp. Stapp later wenton to become the first Director of Environmental Education for UNESCO, and thenthe Global RiversInternational Network.Ultimately, the first EarthDay on April 22, 1970 – anational teach-in about environmental problems – paved the way for the modernenvironmental education movement. Later that same year, President Nixon passedthe National Environmental Education Act, which was intended to incorporateenvironmental education into K-12 schools. Then, in 1971, the NationalAssociation for Environmental Education (now known as the North AmericanAssociation for Environmental Education) was created to improve environmentalliteracy by providing resources to teachers and promoting environmentaleducation programs.Internationally, environmental education gained recognitionwhen the UN Conference on the Human Environment held in Stockholm, Sweden, in1972, declared environmental education must be used as a tool to address globalenvironmental problems. The United Nations Education Scientific and CulturalOrganization (UNESCO) and United NationsEnvironment Program (UNEP)created three major declarations that have guided the course of environmentaleducation.Stockholm DeclarationJune 5–16, 1972 The declarationof the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment.
The documentwas made up of 7 proclamations and 26 principles “to inspire and guide thepeoples of the world in the preservation and enhancement of the humanenvironment.”The Stockholm Conference produced, among others, the HumanEnvironment Declaration, with environmental guidelines to the participatingcountries’ governments contained in the World Action Plan, and, in particular,recommending the establishment of an Environmental Education internationalprogram directed at the common citizen’s qualification training, in order toenable citizens to manage and control their environments. The Conferencegranted education the status of key element for confronting the emergingworldwide environmental crisisBelgrade CharterOctober 13–22, 1975 The Belgrade Charter wasthe outcome of the International Workshop on Environmental Education held inBelgrade, Jugoslavia (now Serbia).
The Belgrade Charter was built upon the Stockholm Declaration and adds goals, objectives, andguiding principles of environmental education programs. It defines an audiencefor environmental education, which includes the general public.Tbilisi DeclarationOctober 14–26, 1977 The year of 1977 represented amilestone for the history of Environmental Education.
The Tbilisi Conference inURSS held by UNESCO in collaboration with PNUMA (UNEP), granted EnvironmentalEducation the status of international policy, establishing principles andgeneral guidelines for programs to be prepared all over the world. Since then,what is now called Environmental Education focus its efforts on informing andproviding the necessary knowledge to make people aware of environmentalproblems. Awareness-training, consciousness-raising and participation are keywords and include, respectively, the following goals: to awaken individuals andcollectivities to environmental problems; to give meaning to these problems byrelating them to daily life; and to offer the indispensable knowledge so thatindividuals may be able to undertake actions on behalf of their environment andquality of life.- The Tbilisi Declaration “noted the unanimous accord in theimportant role of environmental education in the preservation and improvementof the world’s environment, as well as in the sound and balanced development ofthe world’s communities.” The Tbilisi Declaration updated and clarifiedThe Stockholm Declaration and The Belgrade Charter by including new goals, objectives,characteristics, and guiding principles of environmental education.
Later that decade, in 1977, the Intergovernmental Conferenceon Environmental Education in Tbilisi, Georgia emphasized the role of EnvironmentalEducation in preserving and improving the global environment and sought toprovide the framework and guidelines for environmental education. TheConference laid out the role, objectives, and characteristics of environmentaleducation, and provided several goals and principles for environmental education.In 1992, at the United Nations Conference on Environment andDevelopment, Rio-92, the importance of Environmental Education as a tool for aqualitative change in mankind’s behaviour towards the environment wasreaffirmed. The document proposed by this Forum, the Agenda 21, includes achapter specifically dedicated to this theme, entitled Promoting EnvironmentalEducation (Cap. 36, section IV), which deals with the redirection ofEnvironmental Education towards sustainability.To be successful in reaching this goal, EnvironmentalEducation should be taught not only at formal schools but also at the so-callednon-formal and informal spaces.
For consciousness-raising and sensitization tohappen in a wider spectrum, programs must be established both at formaleducational places and at teacher training schools and courses, and at placesdesigned for non-formal and informal education. Within formal education, wealready find Environmental Education as part of the school disciplines.Nevertheless, it is in non-formal educational places that major programs may beidentified. Non-formal education pursues goals that are planned but notspecifically directed to grant scores as part of the official educationalsystem. It is a system complementary to formal education, playing an importantrole in the renewal of attitudes and values currently demanded by our society.Examples of non-formal education are: museums, science centres, exhibitions,parks, and cultural centres. Other examples include the actions of neighbourhoodenvironmental associations, and sets of activities promoted by a company or aunion for their employees.
The main goals of such initiatives are to improvethe quality of community life and strengthen the sense of citizenship.Therefore, informal education consists of non-plannededucation taking place during the socialization process related to the actualenvironment, including the daily relationships established with family members,neighbours, co-workers, etc. Its importance is related to its multiplyingeffect, as each person will be, by his/her turn, a potential promoter of thisdaily social interaction.Associated to citizenship notions, Environmental Education innon-formal spaces is responsible for actions that are more conscious and ethic,and for strengthening local development initiatives in their path towardssustainability.2.4. CONFERENCES AND REPORTS ON ENVIRONMENTUN activity in the field of environment has beendriven by major conferences and reports. UN Conference on the Human Environment (1972) World Commission on Environment and Development (1987) United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (1992) General Assembly Special Session on the Environment (1997) World Summit on Sustainable Development (2002) UN Conference on Sustainable Development (2012)U N CONFERENCEON THE HUMAN ENVIRONMENT (1972) Economic and Social Council resolution 1346 (XLV) of 30 July 1968 recommended the General Assembly consider convening a UN conference on problems of the human environment.
Conference convened by General Assembly resolution 2398 (XXIII) of 3 December 1968 Held in Stockholm, 5-16 June 1972 Led to the establishment of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Outcome document: A/CONF.48/14/Rev.1WORLD COMMISSIONON ENVIRONMENT AND DEVELOPMENT (1987) Established by General Assembly resolution 38/161of 19 December 1983 Prepared a report for General Assembly in 1987 Based on a four-year study Transmitted by A/42/427 Entitled Our Common Future, also known as the Brundtland report Developed the theme of sustainable development UNITED NATIONSCONFERENCE ON ENVIRONMENT AND DEVVELOPMENT (1992) Convened by General Assembly resolution 44/228 of 20 December 1988 Held in Rio de Janeiro, 3-14 June 1992 Known at the time as the Earth Summit Later came to be called the Rio Conference Led to the establishment of the Commission on Sustainable Development Outcome document in 3 volumes: A/CONF.
151/26/Rev.1 Vol.I + Corr.1: Resolutions adopted by the Conference Vol.II: Proceedings of the Conference Vol.III + Corr.1: Statements made by Heads of State or Government at the summit segment of the Conference Three major agreements adopted (found in Vol.
I + Corr.1): Rio Declaration on Environment and Development, a series of principles defining the rights and responsibilities of States Agenda 21, a global plan of action to promote sustainable development Statement of Forest Principles, a set of principles to underpin the sustainable management of forests worldwide Two multilateral treaties were opened for signature: United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Convention on Biological Diversity Called for several major initiatives in other key areas of sustainable development, such as, a global conference on Small Island Developing States; negotiations began for a Convention to Combat Desertification, and for an agreement on highly migratory and straddling fish stocksGENERAL ASSEMBLY SPECIAL SESSION ONTHE ENVIRONMENT (1997) Called for by General Assembly resolutions 47/190 and 51/181 Known as the Earth Summit +5 19th special session of the General Assembly Held in New York, 23-27 June 1997 Review of the implementation of Agenda 21 Outcome document: General Assembly resolution S-19/2 of 27 June 1997, Programme for the Further Implementation of Agenda WORLD SUMMIT ON SUSTAINABLEDEVELOPMENT (2002) Convened by General Assembly resolution 55/199 of 20 December 2000 Also known as Rio +10 Held in Johannesburg, 26 August – 4 September 2002 Reviewed progress in the implementation of Agenda 21 since its adoption in 1992 WSSD website still available Outcome document: A/CONF.199/20 + Corr.1, includes: Johannesburg Declaration on Sustainable Development Plan of Implementation UN CONFERENCE ON SUSTAINABLEDEVELOPMENT(2012) Called for by General Assembly resolution 66/197 Known as Rio+20 Held in Rio de Janeiro, 20-22 June 2012 Rio +20 website Outcome document A/CONF.216/16, includes “The future we want” 2.5HISTORY OF ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION AS INFUSED IN SCIENCE EDUCATIONAccording to NCF 2005″The present statusof Environmental Education (EE) in schools had its genesis in the NationalPolicy of Education (NPE) 1986 (modified in 1992), in which ‘Protection of theEnvironment’ is stated as a common core around which a National CurriculumFramework (NCF) would be woven.
The National Policy on Education 1986emphasized the need to create awareness of environmental concerns byintegrating it in the educational process at all stages of education and forall sections of society. Accordingly, the National Curriculum for Elementaryand Secondary Education: A Framework 1988 presented the NCERT’s view: “Theschool curriculum should highlight the measures for protection and care of theenvironment, prevention of pollution and conservation of energy.” Inconsonance with these documents, Environmental Studies was introduced as asubject at the primary level.
The topics related to environment were suitablyinfused with different science and social science subjects at all schoolstages. Understanding of the environment in its totality, both natural andsocial, and their interactive processes, the environmental problems and theways and means to preserve the environment was one of the General Objectives ofEducation as per National Curriculum. Framework 2000.”Thanks to a two-year study thatidentified the gaps and anomalies in environmental education in India, 800schools now have a new and improved syllabus that promotes an understanding ofenvironmental issues.
More than 100 schools in the state of Maharashtra,and 700 more around India, now have a syllabus that aims to improve children’sunderstanding and knowledge of the environment.This change stems from a WorldBank-aided study, undertaken by the Indian government since 1999, with theobjectives of strengthening environment education in the formal school system.Apart from Maharashtra, seven other states — Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Goa, Jammuand Kashmir, Orissa, Punjab and Uttaranchal — were selected for the pilotimplementation of this project.The project was designed in two phases.In the first phase, a critical content analysis was undertaken in order to findout the status of environmental content in the textbooks currently being usedin the schools.
On the basis of the findings, the second phase of pilotimplementation was designed, to ensure that environmental education is coveredthrough infusion in existing subjects and not as a separate subject. Practical,hands-on activities, field experiences, work experiences etc are importantcomponents of environmental learning. These need to be planned andoperationalised with inputs from NGOs and learning centres like museums, zoosetc.
The eight states were selected for theproject on the basis of their geographical spread, existing environmental contentin textbooks and willingness of the state to participate in the exercise. Eighthundred schools in these states (100 schools in each state) were selected forthe initiative.The Bharati Vidyapeeth Institute ofEnvironment Education and Research (BVIEER), Pune, did a two-year contentanalysis of more than 1,800 textbooks from all over the country, studying theirhandling of environmental subjects. Textbooks in General Science, Geography andLanguages were analysed to assess the environment education inputs.The BVIEER content analysis identified99 environmental concepts including Natural Resources, Biodiversity, Pollution,People and Environment, Energy etc. Each concept was assessed for accuracy,relevance to the text, appropriateness to the age-group, consistency, bias etc.
Once the matrix was complete it was easy to identify the lacunae or ‘gaps’ inthe curriculum.While most of the Geography textbooksdid discuss the importance of the atmosphere, hydrosphere and lithosphere indetail, and focused on the greenhouse effect, ozone depletion etc, theresearchers found that there is little effort to interlink environmentalconcepts and real life experiences. This means that most students learn thesubject by rote and do not identify or believe in the cause of environmentalprotection. There is a serious absence of locale-specific information andseveral gaps in the appreciation of ecosystems, their structure, functions,uses, degradation and conservation. There is hardly any information onsustainable lifestyles and what individuals can and should do for environmentalpreservation as a part of personal day-to-day activity.Several simple environmental topics suchas the variety of plant and animal species in the world, in India and in eachstate, do not find appropriate representation in the curriculum. Very often,information provided is dated.
For instance, DDT in most books is mentioned asa common pesticide, even though commercial production and use of DDT is bannedin India.While solar energy is frequently focusedon, other sources of non-conventional energy are not dealt with adequately. Inmost instances it is observed that the complexity and frequency of each conceptdoes not progress over the years.
Comprehension and the will to teachthese topics seemed dismal amongst most teachers. Most put this down to lack oftime, lack of sufficiently locale-specific environmentally relevant educationalmaterial, lack of institutional and parental support and a host of suchexplanations.The researchers subsequently suggestedchanges in the textbooks.
Dr E K Bharucha, the director of BVIEER says,”Based on the analysis we made of the textbooks, the textbooks ofstandards 6, 7 and 8 have been redrafted in eight states of the country.”In Maharashtra, BVIEER actually sat with the textbook writers to bring aboutchanges in the curriculum.Forthe pilot implementation of Phase II, textbooks of science, social sciences andlanguages at middle school level (standards VI to VIII) were targeted. Theconcerned textbooks in these states have been modified to strengthen theinfusion of environmental concepts and have been introduced in the selectedproject schools in six states. The remaining two states are in the process ofintroducing these modified textbooks.
The project also involved orientation forall the major stakeholders. This was done through workshops for the EducationalAdministrators, concerned officials of the State Council of EducationalResearch