Learning is in our nature

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To encourage students and their teachers to go out in nature and learn about forest, the JSC “Latvia’s State Forests” together with the National Centre for Education and Rīga Teika Secondary School have published a new book for elementary schools “Learning is in our nature”. It includes active and practical ideas for lessons outside – in the school yards, in parks or in forest, where students, using all their senses, can learn the obligatory school materials in a natural way.

As the creator of LVM school programme, Līga Abizāre, says then this initiative is connected with an educational reform on a national level, by implementing an competency-based education. It basically means that the century old tradition when teacher is in front of a blackboard and teaches the material and students learn sitting in their desks, is to be let go. “Each study subject can be taught in forest, because lots of questions in all of school subjects are connected with forest and sustainability. Thus, all teachers can participate,” L. Abizāre is certain.

The Rīga Teika Secondary School has a collaboration with the LVM in environmental education questions since year 2008 by promoting learning in nature. In 2013, school signed a collaboration memorandum with LVM with an aim to put into practice and develop environmental education programmes for lessons outside school premises.

The director of school, Ilona Bergmane, shares her experience, “Quite often it is very hard for us to “step out of the box”, to do things differently, not the way we are used to, especially, for the big city schools. But, if you are excited and passionate about it, then everything is possible! You can teach mathematics in a school yard, you can go together with more than 200 students and their parents and plant a forest, you can become a Mammadaba Embassy and inspire others as well!”

The book – guide for schools to learn about forests “Learning is in our nature” is published in the framework of environmental education programme “Learning about forests” with the support of Latvian Environmental Protection Fund. The programme “Learning about forests”, which has a scent of a real forest, is being put into practice by JSC “Latvia’s State Forests” in collaboration with the National Centre for Education since year 2005. For more information www.mammadaba.lv/skolam and www.leaf.global

The book “Learning is in our nature”: