In May 2013, the Earth Charter Center for Education for Sustainable Development organized and carried out an executive program for educators called “Education and Values for Sustainable Development with the Earth Charter: Teaching What Really Matters”. The course facilitators were Sam Crowell from California State University, and Mirian Vilela of Earth Charter International. The course was held over five days from nine in the morning to five in the afternoon at the EC Center for ESD on the UPEACE campus in Costa Rica. Participants came from North, South, and Central America, Europe, Africa, and the Middle East.
The course was a great success with high participant satisfaction. Sam Crowell’s style and content offered the participants numerous tools and ways of thinking about education with the Earth Charter such that participants left feeling imbued with new energy and resources to bring sustainability education to their various institutions and communities.
Here is a note from Sofía del Río, a secondary school teacher from Costa Rica, to Sam Crowell:
“Thank you for everything you taught us. It is known that every day we learn something new, but the week we spent at the Earth Charter School was “every minute we learn something new”. I keep revisiting all the comments and notes, as you suggested, it is amazing how new things come out of it.
Thank you for the opportunity of sharing that time, and for all the words said. I love being a teacher, but more than everything I love seeing people transform their way of thinking about the world, about life. Now that I have a clear picture on how to include the Earth Charter in absolutely everything I do, it is amazing how my lessons have changed. Even my students told me that they are going to keep sending me to all the courses, so I can bring them new things!!”
Also, another participant, Sarah Brikke, from France wrote about her experiences at the course and afterwards at the World Environment Education Congress in Morocco. Her writing is a beautiful description of the transformative effect of the course on her thinking, feeling, and interacting. Click here to read her Earth Charter story.
And here is a video of the class in action with voices of the participants.
Here are a few pictures of the class as well.