A week on and the country is in many ways barely recognisable as the changes to our lives because of COVID-19 take effect.  Schools are mostly shut, but are supporting students learning at home, and universities are teaching on-line. Teach the Future has suspended its campaign, acknowledging that now is not the time to be trying to influence government.  There will be some upsides to all this as new habits are embedded, and things we took to be impossible are found not to be so.  The greater use of on-line conferencing technologies, such as zoom.us, will be one of these it is to be hoped especially if it leads to less travel (and carbon).  Another might well be on-line support of learning, and we feature a number of schemes this week.  Meanwhile, all at NAEE with you well in the coming weeks and months. ∫∫∫

.

Here is a selection of seas / marine / coastal resources that young people everywhere might enjoy and learn something from.  All of these activities can be experienced without leaving home.  It was compiled by Henricus Peters #DoTheRightThing

Marine Conservation Society – fact sheets about common, threatened and endangered sea life, and about beach cleanups. They also have an Adopt a Turtle scheme
Marine Life Biological Association – lots of information including images
National Geographic – informative articles and amazing images
World Conservation Union – articles about key marine issues, and images, especially Antarctica
BirdLife International – lots about birds including the albatross
National Geographic – their children’s website has lots of stuff to read and do.  ∫∫∫

.

@wmsussch is listing imaginative online support for students forced to learn at home.  It says do keep checking the Twitter feed, and keep adding your own suggestions.  ∫∫∫

.

ClairCity has just released an Educators Pack, complete with lessons and activities students can do now or later in school.  The lessons and activities were originally intended for (and have been tested in) a classroom setting but many can be easily adapted.  ∫∫∫

.

Conservation Volunteers in Birmingham are offering the following during the COVID-19 outbreak:

  1. Support with outdoor learning sessions at schools which are remaining partially open for children of key workers – helping schools with food growing and wildlife gardening activities.
  2. They are creating online resources for families who wish to start growing food at home during isolation – including simple tips for reusing household waste for seed trays and pots, tips on home composting and how to get going with food growing with little or no experience.
  3. They are also offering phone and email advice to people wanting to grow their own food and/or improve their local green spaces.

.

How much energy does one internet search use?  Given that this update encourages searches, it’s key question for us.  Rather alarmingly, Rod Liddle, writing in the Sunday Times last year, said: “It is estimated that a single Google search could power a low-energy light bulb for an hour.”  That seems a lot to us.  Full Fact, an independent fact-checking charity investigated.  You can read their slightly reassuring (if complicated) conclusions here∫∫∫

.

This is The Economist’s latest Climate update.  It contains features on the oil price dispute, the monitoring of the oceans, and renewable energy in Texas. ∫∫∫

.

Because of the Corona virus, a youth campaign, Polluters Outtook a day of international action online, with a social media campaign encouraging people to contact large industrial companies.  Polluters Out wants to see fossil-fuel firms taken out of international climate negotiations hosted by the United Nations (such as COP26).

Polluters Out also uses online symposia to educate people about the climate crisis.  Three were held recently with foci on:

  • how west African communities are dealing with climate change
  • why society is responding so much faster to covid-19 than it has to the climate crisis
  • climate justice.

Future sessions will be recorded.  ∫∫∫

.

NAAEE has opened its global search for 30 game-changing leaders under 30 years of age who are using environmental education to build a sustainable future for all.  You can learn more about the award, and nominate either yourself or a fellow leader here.  Nominations close on May 8th.  ∫∫∫

.

Here’s something to do on your lawn later in the year.  The Every Flower Counts project will take place this year from 23rd to 31st May.

Plantlife says: “By taking part in this brand new citizen science action, we will show you how much nectar the flowers in your lawn are producing.  The more wild flowers you have in your lawn – and the more types of wild flowers – the more nectar will be produced.  If you #SayNoMow and leave areas of your lawn unmown, you’re likely to have many more wild flowers and lots more nectar.  From your results, we will calculate a National Nectar Index to show how lawns across Britain are helping to feed our pollinators.  We’ll also reveal the top ten lawn flowers in Britain and show you how to increase the number of flowers in your lawn.”  ∫∫∫

.

Given all that’s going on, now might be the time to join the London Schools Eco-Network Slack group for resources and discussions.  Just click here∫∫∫