smallClick here to listen to recent a Women’s Hour podcast on how to talk to young people about climate change.  At the heart of this is a contribution from Fiona Cowan, the headteacher of Bolsover Infants school who has completed the UN’s EduCCate Global the Climate Change teacher training programme which we featured in August.  The podcast is 11 minutes long, although only a short time was devoted to hearing from Fiona Cowan.   ∫∫∫

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A reminder that November 7th is Outdoor Teaching Day. This is a global campaign to celebrate and inspire outdoor learning and play.  On the day, thousands of schools around the world take lessons outdoors and prioritise playtime. In 2018, over 3.5 million children in over 100 countries took part.  What will you be doing? ∫∫∫

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A reminder that the National Office for Statistics is looking for data on outdoor education visits.  Details here.  They are looking to collate historical as well as current and future figures, and would like you to send data to them.  Please forward all date to Isabelle.Vickers@ons.gov.uk . ∫∫∫

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A new initiative from LEAF Education aims to encourage more pupils to visit a farm to enrich their curriculum and promote learning.  This initiative is now available throughout the academic year and is an opportunity for schools in England and Wales to visit a farm and experience high quality teaching and learning delivery from one of LEAF Education’s Regional Education Consultants (RECs).  Details of these open farm school days are here. ∫∫∫

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The GA says why not work with the Field Studies Council to engage your students in two days of focused revision:

A weekend revision course creates the perfect opportunity to encourage students to become motivated, focused and effective with their geography revision. Students will spend time visiting physical and human environments aiding in the revision of topic content alongside understanding of the fieldwork enquiries and developing students’ revision strategy and confidence in tackling exam questions.”

You can find out more here. ∫∫∫

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There’s a scheme that offers eligible schools Kick Start grants to help run an event or activity during British Science Week March 6 to 15 2020.  Up to £700 is available if your school meets one of the following criteria:

  • Have a high proportion of pupils eligible for pupil premium
  • Have a high proportion of pupils from ethnic minority backgrounds
  • Be a small school based in a remote or rural location.

You can find more information about the criteria here∫∫∫

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The global carbon atlas is a World Bank project that charts the growth of the carbon economy over time.  It has spectacular graphics such as an interactive map of how CO2 emissions have changed in every country since 1962.  This project is a huge resource for schools (and for anyone who wants to be as up to date as possible with global heating).

The project shows that the UK is at the top of a very problematic league table: the difference between CO2 emissions based on national production and those based on national consumption.  We’re not just on top but way ahead of our nearest rival.  Put simply, the UK is responsible for ~40% more carbon dioxide emissions from its consumption than from its production.  Just think of all that veg we import from the Netherlands; it’s the Dutch who have to account for the energy for heating, the fertiliser, the water used and the shipping to the UK, whereas we only account for in-country transport.  Because of examples like this (and imported steel and coal), we tell a good carbon story based on consumption but keep very quiet on the bigger picture.   Greta Thunberg says that the rich West is very good at “creative carbon accounting”.  She’s right.  ∫∫∫

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There is a new lesson pack on fuel cells which the Hydrogen Hub has developed for teaching GCSE Chemistry.  It includes animated videos to explain how fuel cells work. ∫∫∫

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Plantlife has launched its new road verge guidelines which provide a roadmap to fundamentally transform the management of the UK’s verges.  This best practice guide is for all those engaged in verge management and creation and is the result of our collaboration with national highways agencies, industry contractors and other wildlife organisations.   The guidelines provide practical advice on how local authorities can fulfil their biodiversity duties whilst reducing management burdens over time, using real life examples of how good management is already being implemented on the ground.  The less and later, two-cut approach suggested in the guidelines would replenish the seed bank, restore floral diversity, save councils money and provide pollinator habitat estimated to equal the size of London, Birmingham, Manchester, Cardiff and Edinburgh combined. ∫∫∫

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An unprecedented 102 species were recorded recently during a two-hour mushroom hunt at Hestercombe House and Gardens, Somerset, organised by the Fungus Conservation Trust (FGT).  Michael Jordan, chairman of the FGT, said that the fungi were brought on by the ideal summer and autumn weather.  The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) says that it has the best year for fungi at its gardens for several years, with unusual scarlet caterpillar club fungus and orange peel fungus spotted at Harlow Carr in Harrogate.  What have you seen? ∫∫∫