What is COP26?

COP26 – What can schools do to tackle climate change?

What is COP26?

With climate change in the headlines daily, it has been impossible to miss the news coverage of the COP26 conference held in Glasgow from 31st October. Despite this being the 26th Conference of the Parties brought together by the United Nations to discuss climate change, it has only been this year that it has obtained so much attention in the media worldwide.

The UK government took a leading role in this year’s conference and the Department for Education (DfE) has been given the huge responsibility for fighting against climate change by educating young people.

What can Schools do?

The UK government is keen to involve schools in raising awareness in young people to provide future generations with the tools and knowledge to confront climate change successfully.

Your school may already have begun to tackle the challenge and started the process of getting pupils to think about a sustainable future but www.gov.uk are providing success stories from teachers and pupils to provide further inspiration.

There are some exciting resources to help you develop activities to support your pupils:

Improving your knowledge

Getting started with such an important topic as climate change can be daunting for teachers, school leaders and support staff. Equipping yourself with up to date knowledge about the climate crisis and more importantly the ways in which we can provide solutions is a key factor in increasing the effectiveness of a positive climate curriculum.

COP26 has been the catalyst for many discussions and lessons that can kickstart your school’s involvement.

Generation Zero classroom resources

You will find the following videos on  The DfE YouTube Channel. They can be used directly with pupils or used by school leaders as development for staff.

Teach the Teacher Lesson

This lesson was delivered by students who aim to teach teachers and pupils about climate change and climate justice across different subject areas.

Too Wet or Too Dry: adapting schools to water risks and a future climate

Divided into two sections for teachers and pupils this lesson was delivered by the DfE’s Water Strategy Team to help schools to consider the impacts of flooding and what they can do to conserve water.

Climate Solutions Lecture

This talk was delivered by Professor Dave Reay from the University of Edinburgh, and it explores different ways to tackle climate change

Green Skills and Careers

Industry experts such as Centrica and Microsoft delivered presentations in this session on a variety of green career pathways.

Official COP26 events

You will find these videos on The official COP26 YouTube Channel.

DfE launch biodiversity and nature initiatives

This video shows the launch of two new DfE initiatives.

Education and Climate Ministers Summit

With the UK asking countries to pledge to ensure that their young people will be prepared to fight climate change, this summit brought together Education and Climate ministers from around the world. It included the UK’s Sustainability and Climate Change Education Strategy set out by Secretary of State Nadhim Zahawi.

Green career pathways

This discussion included how Higher and Further education providers can create pathways for young people to follow a green career with Minister Donelan setting out the UK government’s plans.

So, you want a green career?

Listen to stories by green entrepreneurs who discussed the ideal route towards a green career working alongside One Young World and the Prince’s Trust.

For more useful information you can go to the Together for our Planet website.

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