Inspiring Change towards Sustainability: The New Curriculum

Now that I am about a week or two into this course, I can see that the concepts of sustainability, wellbeing, and hope are not only central to my path through this course, but will also quickly become central in my teaching practice as well.  I feel as though I am coming to a place where I am able to find new meaning, value, and purpose in teaching.  The idea of hope to inspire and create change to work towards a sustainable planet is not just an important concept.  It is much, much larger than that.  In many ways it is becoming clear to me that creating change toward sustainability is the new curriculum.  These are the most important ideas among all curricular concepts, and they need to find their way and permeate into all curricular areas. 

There are many important things that teachers do.  Teachers create change in many ways.  But all of the ways in which we impact children are really moot if we are not able to inspire children to make change in this world, quickly.  It is becoming blatantly obvious that we are living in a completely unstable and unsustainable world.  That must change.  Rapid change is needed.  Drastic and radical change is needed.  If we don’t soon begin to head in the direction of sustainable systems, then I don’t see how it makes any difference to inspire children to read, write, draw, or dance.

Sustainability, change, and renewal.  It is the new curriculum.  This is what we need to be teaching in our English courses, in our visual art classes, in math, even in phys.ed and drama and shop classes, and yes certainly in social studies and in the sciences.  It is the new curriculum, at all levels.  It is necessary to work its way into all areas of education.


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