This event looked at critical questions around how we may combine science- and arts-based approaches to shift perspectives away from a human-centred view of the world to one that views humans as only one thread in the web of life.
The Covid-19 pandemic is not the only global challenge we face: climate change and biodiversity loss are arguably of greater concern as ‘Forests burn, glaciers melt and one million species face extinction’ (University of Cambridge, 2019). Sir David Attenborough (2019) warns us, ‘Our planet hangs in the balance. The only way to operate is to believe we can do something about it…’. Education is key to this and there are plans, led by nature writer Mary Colwell and MP Caroline Lucas to develop a new optional GCSE in natural history (TES, 2020) designed to help students develop a greater understanding of the natural environment. This will involve consultations between exam boards, DfE, teachers and subject associations.
This session, suggested ways that we can shift perspectives through: illustrations in children’s literature; digital fiction; social action, and adventure. Each paper within this webinar outlined the rationale for the proposed approach and offered evidence-based suggestions for incorporating this into teaching practice. By sharing stories from our research studies, we will demonstrate the importance of shifting perspectives through pedagogical practices so that we can positively affect societal and environmental change. The session concluded by looking forward with hope to doing things differently, together.