The Present Curricula on Environmental Education in Elementary Schools Environmental education has become one of the most important aspects of education in developed countries. In order to keep the island’s environmental quality from deteriorating, the Republic of China has been doing its best to enhance its environmental education. The maintenance of the environmental quality is not only based on the citizens’ awareness but most importantly it is also based on the actions of Chinese people.
According to studies, human awareness of environmental qualities must be cultivated during childhood. In elementary schools, there are environmental concepts, direct and indirect subject matter, contents of the textbook and supplementary materials for the present curricula on environmental education available for discussion. The Environmental Concepts There are six environmental concepts that are required for China’s present curricula on environmental education in elementary schools.
(1) The earth is a complex environmental system which exhibits a series of interactions involving living and non-living organisms, and how they are interrelated with each other.
(2) Natural resources should be reasonably used, otherwise, the quality of life deteriorates quickly. There is only a limited amount of natural resources, and human beings cannot overpopulate the world. The renewable resources, such as agriculture and the sun’s and the ocean’s energy resources, should be properly used to produce a healthy environment.
(2) All kinds of pollutants will cause a crisis for the surviving organisms.
(4) Balance within the ecosystem is the fundamental basis for the survival of humans and other living organisms.
(5) The environment belongs to everyone. Everyone has a responsibility and right to environmental protection. The existence of benefits in preventing pollution is unquestionable, however the accurate assessment of these remains difficult. To date, the predominant method of assessing progress is through waste generation data. The amount of waste generated in one year is compared to the amount generated the following year.